A friend and I talk often about what it is like to be daughter's without fathers. She lost her dad a few years ago and mine's been gone almost 22 years now. Somehow...the pain is the same. Time has healed some of the ache, but mostly, we talk about all the things we wish they could have experienced with us. I think about the host of things I have missed the most about not having him here these last 22 years...meeting Bruce..the walking down the aisle at my wedding..the ministry that God called me to, the birth of both my kids and what I knew would have been a tender ear towards our struggle with infertility and miscarriages, watching the grands grow, watching me grow. And I think about the things I've missed by him not being here...his wisdom, his smile, his heart for giving, his patience, his ability to create anything from his wood shop...(boy would he love all the pinterest ideas I could throw his way!), seeing him with his grandkids....and the list could go on and on.
It's tough, this grieving process. It takes a lifetime to get over....and by then, if you're fortunate enough to have a loved one who knew Jesus, you get to be reunited with them. This past weekend Bruce and Savannah attended a father daughter dance in our community. I was reminded as they readied themselves for the night out that these will be the memories that Savannah gets to cling to one day when Bruce is gone. These are the moments that she will look back and think about how much she was loved and cherished by her dad. These moments will shape her view of men and eventually once day her husband. These are the memories that she will relive over and over with him.
I'm thankful for this time. I know it could be gone in a moment. These days...hours...minutes are being held in the palm of God's hand...and can end in an instant. I also am keenly aware that if they did God is able to extend grace and peace to grieving, sorrow stricken souls that cry out in the horrible pain of loss. It's difficult to understand why lives are snuffed out before our acceptable timetable. I think God chooses people who can radiate HIM to endure this incredible grief and loss because it is in our weak and vulnerable state that He is able to be strong for us. Strong so others can see HIM getting us through.
Is God helping you through a difficult process right now? Look into the eyes of the one who loves you more than your earthly father, husband, child or friend...and know He will be for you when you can't be anything. When the pain and hurt and anxiousness and anger are too much....He is able. And that is enough.