Ashes to Beauty Day 6

The Pour Out:

Pour it ALL out to God. Take a moment to clear the clutter, by letting go of all those wandering thoughts (the grocery list or to do list items that won’t stop distracting you … AND … your prayer needs and concerns.)

The Beans:

The Background:

In Jesus’ time to be a widow meant you were dependent upon your grown children for support. If you had no children and no husband, sadly, you were destitute.

The Verse:

Luke 7:12-15

As he approached the town gate, a dead person was being carried out—the only son of his mother, and she was a widow. And a large crowd from the town was with her. When the Lord saw her, his heart went out to her and he said, “Don’t cry.” Then he went up and touched the bier they were carrying him on, and the bearers stood still. He said, “Young man, I say to you, get up!”  The dead man sat up and began to talk, and Jesus gave him back to his mother.”

The Fill:

What’s the point for YOU?:

  • What word or phrase from the verse above popped out to you?

Read the verse a second time and ask yourself:

  • What could this word or phrase be speaking to in your life? (What situation, struggle, relationship, or decision)

The Steam:

What does all of this mean to me/how can I apply that to my life today?

My brother passed away four years ago. Three years back, as the one year anniversary got closer, I finally took the time to blog how I felt – to tap into those feelings and write them down. As a writer, I suppose this was my way of finding closure, comfort, and understanding. I decided to share my words, in hopes that I could possibly help someone else dealing with something hard in their lives.

Here’s what I said:

“One year since the call that brought me to my knees.

One year since I melted into my husband’s lap and sobbed on our kitchen floor.

When someone you love dies suddenly, seemingly out of nowhere – it hurts. It takes a long time to navigate through it all, to process it, if those are even the right words.

I’m still processing, and as we come up to the first anniversary – I’m finally at a place where I’m ready to write … a little anyways ….. So here we go!

A few days after my brother passed away, I was back home in Columbia, SC, and in my hurry to get home to my family, I realized I forgot to pack any dressy shoes to wear to his service. So I went out to the mall ….. and it hit me like a ton of bricks.

While my world had suddenly slammed to a halt, the rest of the world was still spinning – business as usual!

I remember aimlessly walking up and down the aisles of shoes in Belk, tears streaming down my face and wanting to scream at the strangers around me, 
“DON’T YOU KNOW WHAT MY HEART IS GOING THROUGH?!? 
HOW IN THE WORLD CAN YOU CARE ABOUT SOMETHING AS POINTLESS AS SHOPPING? 
LIFE HAS TO BE SO MUCH MORE THAN THIS!”

What I think I really wanted to scream was,

“DOES ANYONE NOTICE OR EVEN CARE ABOUT MY PAIN?!”

My husband and immediate family were there, they cared, but they were hurting too. I still felt like I needed help, someone who could make sense of it all, come and help me to pick up the pieces that had suddenly shattered all around me!

Surrounded by people, I was suddenly aware of how desperately alone I was.”

Life can be hard sometimes. There are days where you feel like the world just stops spinning and you have no clue how you’re ever going to put one foot in front of the other again.

These are the times where we need Jesus more than anything in the world, yet most often can’t muster the strength to call out to Him.

These are the moments where He intercedes on your behalf, where He hears your moans and wordless sobs and just holds you close.

Just as Jesus does with this woman, please understand that He sees you, His heart aches to know you are aching. Even during those moments where you don’t necessarily understand the pain yourself, He does – He gets it, and He is there!

Reach out to Him today, friend, lay whatever burdens, hurts, and worries you have on your heart and allow Him to wrestle through those emotions for you.

The Transition:

Transitioning from quiet time back into real life can be tricky. We want to take the lesson we’ve just learned, and the peaceful feeling we now have, with us throughout the rest of our day.

Blessings:

List “small” blessings from the past 24 hours.

List small things, because when you only list the big things – you only SEE the big things. Thinking back on a few small blessings each day, helps us develop a habit of actually looking for God in our day to day realities. And if you’re writing them down, then you’ll have hard proof that God truly is always with you.

*This could be anything. A few examples are: “you were blessed with a hug from your child, the weather was especially warm and delightful, or a smile from a stranger on the street.

Affirmations:

List positive affirmations about yourself/life:

Take whatever was laid on your heart and write it in the form of an affirmation:

If you simply felt peaceful today, write, “I WILL remain peaceful today.”

If you are still trying to understand a certain message, write, “I WILL keep searching and remember that God WILL reveal His answer to me.”

Or list, “I AM worth it.” “God DOES love me.” “I WILL make that change.”

**Now go about your day, peaceful and affirmed.**