I feel very vulnerable posting right now. I am sharing on the internet, in a public forum, some of the deepest matters of my heart and life. This is not easy for me, but it is healing and healthy. I write, not because I think you should know or hear what I have to say. I write because God moves in me, speaking to me, as I write. Even if it sounds entirely depressing (and it may!), I write because God is alive and active within me and helping me process my grief in a way that turns ashes into something beautiful...
A *Grief Share devotional (also mentioned in a previous post) talks about a series of losses. It describes the journey of loss of one characteristic after another, like the loss of my encourager, then the loss of my companion, then the loss of my provider, and so on. The collective loss I encounter throughout my day to day cuts deep to my core. One thing builds upon the last. The loss of my lover. The one who holds my hand. The loss of my source of delight. The loss of my best friend. The loss of my co-parent. The loss of my team-mate. (The list is rather endless, as you might imagine.)
Losing Lynn so suddenly feels like the ground has been taken out from under our family. But it also feels like a lack of covering over my family, like we're exposed, vulnerable, out of control or order.
Scripture says that the head of every man is Christ, and the head of the woman is man, and the head of Christ is God. (1 Cor 11:3) In our family, I was the primary caregiver, but Daddy came home and laid down the law. Things were messy. Life wasn't perfect. But we prayed together, worshipped together, loved together, and were teaching our children values like prefer the other, choose joyfulness, have a generous heart, honour your parents, respect and obey, be filled with the Spirit, and we are blessed to be a blessing to others. I speak blessings over our children every night and every time I drop them off. All our values are based on Scriptures that the girls can recite. As new parents, Lynn and I were giving everything we had to honor God as a family and serve in ministry together.
So what now? Now that my kids are out of control? Testing the boundaries in a whole new way. Daddy's not coming home to lay down the law, to say, Girls, you will respect your mother. Where is our head? Where is my support? Where is our covering?
I am not happy about transitioning into single parenthood. It hurts bad.
As a mom, I am taking up the sword of Deborah. (Diana, you know what I mean.) My head is Christ and His head is God. I will approach Him boldly and with confidence. Let us then approach God’s throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need. (Heb 4:16)
I am walking up that blood-stained path towards the throne of grace. YOU, O God, are my head. YOU be the Father to my fatherless children. You - because You are it! I am it! My kids have us. Me and You. Little, weak, puny me, and the Holy Spirit. The God of the universe. My King of Kings.
In Moncton last weekend, Roya asked Grampie, Uncle Joel (or maybe just to me about him), and Uncle Robbie to be her Dad. She is looking for one. Hers hasn't returned and she's starting to realize we're not going to see him any time soon. But no Dad? Surely, there is a Dad somewhere? Surely, somewhere there is a Dad for me?
How do I lead my children in the experience of fatherlessness? When everywhere we look we see happy families, full families, complete families?
YOU put our family back together, God, for I certainly cannot do it. We are broken and shattered. But as for me and my house we will serve the Lord! (Josh 24:15) YOU are the authority in and over my home. YOU are my covering and the covering that goes with my children wherever they go. YOU are a father to the fatherless and the defender of widows. (Ps 68:5)
I would have lost heart had I not believed that I would see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living. Wait for the Lord. Be strong and let your heart take courage. Yes, wait for the Lord. (Psalm 27:13)
*Through a Season of Grief, devotions for your journey from mourning to joy by Bill Dunn and Kathy Leonard