Faith and Grieving      Post 2                                      April 5, 2017 

This is what I know; Jesus defeated the grave. Jesus won the victory over death.

Isaiah 26:8 is a source of great comfort to me; “He will swallow up death forever. The Sovereign Lord will wipe away the tears from all faces.”

I meditate on so many Scripture verses to help me keep my eyes on Jesus and all His promises for me. This doesn’t mean that I’m done grieving. Quite the opposite. I have my grief bursts when an unexpected memory comes to mind. I think of our loved ones every single day. Reading Scripture keeps me focused. It doesn’t lessen the pain of a grieving mother and grandmother. But I find that as I read my favorite verses, or find new ones, Jesus is right there by my side, holding me and reassuring me with His precious word. I sometimes cry as I read. Or smile and nod my head as I reaffirm my trust in God.

Isaiah 26:3-4 “You will keep in perfect peace him whose mind is steadfast, because he trusts in you. Trust in the Lord forever, for the Lord, in the Rock eternal.”

My heart aches so much some days because I just want to see Russell, Shawna, Tylee and Blake again. I remember when my husband had a remote for 13 months to Guam. Rhonda, Russell and I couldn’t accompany him. Thirteen months! That seemed like a life-time to me. I found that if I thought that far ahead it was too overwhelming! So, I broke it down into small sections of time. He left in August and wouldn’t return until September following year. We would see him again at Christmas. Four months away. That was do-able. He surprised us and flew home in October and was there for Russell’s 8th birthday. Now it was October. I only had two months. The following May, as soon as Russell and Rhonda were done with school for the summer, we hopped on a plane and few to Guam for six weeks. We had so much fun and Russell would tell us that was his favorite trip ever! My husband actually was able to fly back home with us and stayed for a few days. Now it was July. One more month to go. At the end of August, I got word that Larry would be home sooner than September! There, we got through it. My heart hurts so much sometimes because I can’t count down the days, weeks and months until I see them again because I don’t know when that will be!

How different this trial is, obviously! They aren’t coming back! But, we will be going to Heaven to see them. Never to say good bye again.

1Corinthians 15: 55-58 “Death has been swallowed up in victory. Where, O death, is your victory? Where, O death, is your sting? The sting of death is sin, and the power of sin is the law. But thanks be to God! He gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.” Therefore, my dear brothers, stand firm. Let nothing move you.”

I take one day at a time. Staying focused on this work God has given me to do gives me hope and a purpose.

Joanne Smith