Monday, April 30, 2012

30th April 2012

Bereavement is tough. Though on reflection, I have to say that the past 11 months have been the most important of my life. In many ways completely horrible, of course! But despite the immense personal challenge just to cope with the emotional turmoil, I can see so much of God’s hand of favour at work in my life. He is guiding my steps, and more than that, at the most difficult of times he seems to quite literally carry me over whatever hurdle is set before me. I’m so grateful for his presence on so many occasions… Christmas, family birthdays, holidays and all the rest of it. My confidence in the Lord is growing day by day, month by month. The reality of his grace is self-evident. Without him I’d be a total wreck, but in actuality I feel pretty good and really quite positive about my future… most of the time. I still seem to have some ups and downs, but I’m quite sure that I’m heading in the right direction. Yes I’m becoming a more whole person; the challenges I’m facing are beginning to be more normal after the years of visiting hospital cancer departments. I’ve been meeting a couple of guys who in different ways are still connected with that world and I really feel for them. It’s almost impossible to plan very far ahead, everything is dependent upon the next hospital appointment. But almost is not quite enough. There is another way to live. God’s way… listening to his voice, following his call, his guiding hand directing our paths.

None of us knows what really lies ahead. We have a choice to live in hope or the despair of pessimism. To the very last day of her life Jane lived with peace in her heart and hope in her encouraging smile. She never gave in to the call of darkness, not for one moment. In the midst of the most challenging of days, when all our earthly hopes were crushed by bad results, we still had fun, a laugh… a coffee, a chocolate bar in the hospital garden, whatever. Pretending to escape into a world of daffodils and spring blossom, leaving the world of cannulas, oxygen tubes and the never-ending bleep of infusion machinery malfunctioning. And we still made plans. Yes, Jane’s business plans had to be shelved when she ended up in a wheelchair; so then we made plans for our time together in eternity. When the Lord returns to planet earth, I believe we’re going to be really busy. So Jane and I picked out our new house and talked of the work we’d be doing based there. My photo shows her standing waiting for me outside the gatehouse, which is a bridge over the moat… dreams are supposed to be ambitious aren’t they? Ok plans change, no problem, but at least we have one to start out with and if that one doesn’t fit we’ll get another one!

Psalm 25:5 Lead me by your truth and teach me, for you are the God who saves me. All day long I put my hope in you.’ (NLT)

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