Friday, October 16, 2009

Friday’s Faith - Spiritual Train-Wreck, part three

Friday’s Faith

Spiritual Train-Wreck, part three

“Dying, and yet we live on…”

As I said in last week’s post:

Merry Katherine’s death has done something for me that I am not sure would have happened any other way. (I think God would put this in the category of “Treasures of Darkness” He gives to the hurting, weak, bereaved, all those of us who are down-and-out.) It has opened my eyes…

“I will give you the treasures of darkness, riches stored in secret places, so that you may know that I am the Lord, the God of Israel, who calls you by name.” Isaiah 45:3


If you remember from “Friday’s Faith” the first week, I talked about the “Spiritual Train-Wreck” my husband and I were thrown into on the day we found out about our child’s death…

I am sorry if my “creativity” confused some of you that first week (see 10/2/09 post); someone kindly pointed out to me that my “text” was messed up; well, that gibberish in the middle of that blog post was supposed to be our “Spiritual Train-Wreck” crash site! If you will look closer to what seems like messed-up text on that post, hopefully you will find some English letters that are the scrambled versions of some of the foundations of our faith that we could no longer recognize in their disheveled state. Maybe you can go back, and find them in the midst of the gibberish, and see if you can unscramble them.

Anyway, I knew I had those solid building blocks of my faith’s foundation scattered and scrambled across that unyielding, life-shattering hard ground in Fort Payne, Alabama where my youngest child, my only daughter, was killed. Those building blocks, or “stones” of

Faith//\\\\\\\/////\Trust ///////////\\\\\\\\\Belief \\\\\\///////Prayer

////////////////////\\\\\\\\\\\\\\Hope\\\\\\\\////////\\\\\\\\\\\///// Love

were scattered across the scene of my child’s crash …into unrecognizable forms.

So, over the days, weeks, months, and years since that 2006 crash, I have been searching for and finding those pieces, working closely alongside God to restore them, but these familiar building blocks or “stones” of our foundation too have been put through the cross, washed in His blood, and have come through looking very different than they did before.

So, yes, there on the ground, I am finding the scrambled remains of trust, love, faith, hope, belief, and prayer. I also found some others that I had known to be parts of that familiar foundation of my faith that I had based my life on before her death. Those stones included


///////\\////\\\\\\\\\\////////Peace////////\\\\\\\\////\\\/ Discernment

////\\\\/Insight///////\\\//\\///\\//\\///\\\/// Comfort




So back to having my eyes opened with "Treasures of Darkness":

So the big surprise for me was—I found many other stones on that wreckage ground that I am sure were there and available to me before, but I had never really noticed them before, not really.

So with Christ by my side, rummaging through the wreckage, He began to give me clues to other stones that I very much needed but had somehow left out of my original faith-foundation. And as I gathered them, painfully but gratefully with God’s help, all of a sudden, my current life began making sense.

With hard-earned insights from many painful days over these past three grieving years…days, weeks, months, and years steeped in Christ’s presence, now these new stones jump out at me as invaluable pieces that not only form a secure faith foundation, but really work together to make some “sense” of this death-wracked life that I am now living!

Scattered across the “Spiritual Train-Wreck” site, these are some of the stones God helped me to begin to find to strengthen my spiritual foundation for the long haul:

////////////Sacrifice\\\\\\\\\\\///// Suffering\\\//////\\\\\\///////////////

//////////////////////////////////////////////\\\\\\\\HIS good purpose\\\\\


/\\\\\////\\\\/\/\\\\/////\\\\Serve with Him in the work of the gospel////////

Your attitude should be like Jesus who…made Himself nothing//\\\\\\\\\\\\\

////////////\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\My profit—I now consider loss for the sake of Christ

/\/\/\/\/\/Put no confidence in the flesh/\/\//\//\//\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\\\\\\\\///////\\\/////////////////////////////\\\\\\\\\\\\\Do nothing out of vain conceit

//////\\\\\\\\\//////////\\\\\\\\\Being one in spirit and purpose\\\\\\\\\////

/\/\/\//\Do nothing out of selfish ambition\\\\\///////////////////\\\\\\\\\\\\\

/\/\/\/////Look out for the interests of Jesus Christ—not for your own interests

\\\//////Taking the very nature of a servant/\/\/\////\\\\\\\\\////////\\\\\\\/\/\/\

/\/\/\//////\\\\\\\\\\\\\////////Learn to be content whatever the circumstances

////////\\\\\\\\\//Become obedient to death—even death on a cross \//\///\/\\/\

/\/\Even if I am poured out like a drink offering/\/\/\////////\\\\\/////\\\\\/\/\

//////\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\Having the righteousness that comes by faith\//\/\/

I consider everything a loss compared to...knowing Christ Jesus my Lord for whose sake I have lost all things\\\\\\\\\\\\\\////////////\\/\/\////////\\\\\\\\\\

\\\/////////\\\\\\\\\\////////\\\\\\\\\\\/////\///\\\\\/\//////\Take up your cross

//\//\//\/Don’t keep your mind on earthly things for your citizenship is in Heaven

/\/\/\In humility consider others better than yourselves//\/\/\/////////\\\\\\\\\\\\\

Want to know Christ & the power of His resurrection & the fellowship of sharing in His sufferings////\\\\\\\\\\///////////////\\\\\\\\\\\////////////


\/\/\\\/\/\/////\/\/Become like Him in His death/\/\/\/////\/////\//////\////////\\/

\/\/\/////////////Being sure of what we hope for, certain of what we do not see…

These “stones” are unusual “gifts,” I know. God usually turns things upside down from what we would expect. Look at the Sermon on the Mount in Matthew 5 that includes

“Blessed are those who mourn for they will be comforted.”

Unexpected! Mourners are blessed!

Please tune in next week for my final post in this series of Friday’s Faith – “Spiritual Train-Wreck” to see how God pulls otherwise dissonant things together with His use of these important “stones” given as “Treasures of Darkness” both in my life, and in the life and death of my dear child.


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