Sing to the Lord a new song,
His praise from the ends of the earth.
My first thoughts this morning were about that last week a year ago. It was my underlying intention, I guess, to relive every moment of those days for . . . for what? Nostalgia? To question again God's plan, or attempting to have devised my own plans by asking the inevitable "what if I had only's?" Do I think that guilt would somehow have changed God's sovereignty?
I am finding out - the hard way - that there is this part of grief that insists the one left behind is held in a bondage of guilt . . . guilt for being happy, guilt for not crying enough, guilt for living. This "monster" continues it's attempts to overwhelm me. Like Traci reminded me the other day: "We were not originally created to experience death." Our very beings cannot take in the concept of death; our soul, mind and bodies are repulsed by the reality of it.
My second thought this morning was again the realization that it was not me who died a year ago. If I die along with Trent, what does that say of God? That He's not worthy to make plans greater than mine? Ummm . . . hello . . . I can barely balance my checkbook, let alone decide the fate of every soul that ever lived plus their eternal time and destination to face their Creator so that it will portray the most glory to God forever and ever and ever.
His ways are higher than our ways; higher than the heavens are from the earth; who can fathom His ways; it is better to be in heaven with Jesus than here in this world where the curse of sin still looms so heavily; I will fix my eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of my faith, who, for the glory and joy set before Him endured even the cross; will God's grace not be sufficient today; will His mercies fail this new day, this new moment?
And then I finally remembered that I don't have to figure this all out. God has only asked me to trust Him in it. So I went to my knees in prayer; I praised the God who gives and takes away; I begged for grace, and for salvation for my children who are still here.
Little Raelynn was so excited the other day to get a new dress. In her simple child-like belief (which, I might add, Aunt Terri could learn from) she said to her Mom, "It's too bad Trent didn't die this year, I could have worn this dress to his funeral."
Anybody who has never grieved without the hope of God and heaven would be mortified at some of the things that have come out of our mouths this past year: there is no doubt in us believers in the family that we will see Trent again, and when we do he is in for quite a few pit-attacks, nouggies, games of tag, popping kisses, and hugs that may never end.
I continue to attempt to learn how to live without my son; I attempt to decipher what really matters in my short days here.
The shock that Trent is really gone still surprises me most days. We are getting "used" to it at home, but the odd comment, or seeing somebody we haven't seen in a while, brings it all back fresh. "Are you really talking about my son?" I want to ask them.
Everywhere we go we make people cry: my mom, my sisters, our friends, the tax guy. There are no adequate words to express the depth of what it is like to see somebody grieving over your son; grieving for us in our grief; feeling the pain on our behalf. I am a people-pleaser and want to take it away from them. I want to tell them not to cry; to tell them that I am sorry for always making them cry; to tell them that I will quit writing and talking about Trent so that they won't have to cry . . . but I have to remember that ultimately I don't write for them; I don't share for them.
I fear forgetting Trent: his smile, his voice, his eyes, his favorite dessert, his favorite pair of jeans.
I don't know how to celebrate the one year anniversary of my son's death. I don't know how to continue when the months have turned into years. I guess it will be a lot like yesterday, and tomorrow, and the first day: all by the grace of God. I keep telling myself that as the days tick by I am counting them down the other way: rather than being one day longer since Trent died, I am really one day closer to eternity myself; one day closer to seeing God for myself. Isn't that the ultimate goal for the believer in Jesus? Isn't heaven the reward? Isn't this the temporary world, and eternity is the end result?
Billy Graham once said: "I am convinced that when a man is prepared to die, he is also prepared to live. The primary goal in life therefore should be to prepare for death. Everything else should be secondary." I am ready for death, secure in Jesus Christ, therefore I am free to live.