Saturday, July 25, 2015

A Month to Remember

The past four weeks have been like something out of a dream, with many ups and downs, unforeseeable twists and turns, and powerful moments. Let me start at the beginning.

1) On June 27th, I received a text from my mom saying that Grampy was in the hospital. I called and was able to talk to him that night. He said he knew that I was there in spirit. The next morning, he quietly slipped away in his sleep. That's how a great man left this world; peacefully dreaming.
2) On June 30th, through a fog of sadness, I emerged having finished my first year of graduate school. My dad arrived the same night, bringing much needed hugs and comfort.
3) On July 5th, the USA Women's National Soccer Team won the Women's World Cup in amazing fashion.
4) On July 6th, I bought Maximus, an adorable little Corolla.
5) On July 9th, I left with three wonderful friends on the trip of a lifetime to visit Ireland. We spent a week roaming the country, driving on narrow roads that led through rolling hills of open fields, trees, and cows. We walked the cliffs along the ocean and explored mountain paths that brought us to breathtaking views.
6) On July 20th, I started my year long internship which will make me into a therapist.
7) In six days, I'm turning 25.

During these four weeks, I've experienced life in dramatic fashion. I am a changed person. Through everything I've learned this month, I'm struck even more with the beauty of the human experience.

Life should be lived with arms wide open, head thrown back, a song in your heart, and a smile on your face.
Struggles make you stronger and loss makes living sweeter.
No matter what obstacle you're facing, it will be overcome.
Go live life to the full!

Thursday, July 2, 2015

"God made man to be imperishable."

"God did not make death,
nor does he rejoice in the destruction of the living. 

For God formed man to be imperishable; 
but by the envy of the devil, death entered the world."

"For God sent the Son into the world, not to condemn the world, but that the world might be saved through him."

"I came that they may have life, and have it abundantly."

God didn't make man for death, but He took what the Devil meant as revenge and turned it into the sweetest source of comfort and power! Now man can be completely restored to full union with God forever in Heaven, which is what we were created for! 

The separation hurts beyond words but the joy we will experience will be even more than we can possibly imagine! I can put words to the hurt that don't quite describe it but I am speechless when I think of the complete, pure joy to come. 

Today is Grampy's memorial service. My grief is still very real, and while these thoughts and verses don't relieve the pain, I know that I have hope and can see peace on the horizon. 

A priest recently reminded me that God wants us to be fully human. I'd been pondering what that meant for a few days before Grampy died. Now, I think I understand a little bit more. Jesus lived and died. He experienced the joys and pains that come with the human condition. Feeling the devastation of loss, feeling the depth of real love, these things make us more human. And hope. Hope is a natural part of the human experience. 

If one of your loved ones has died, know that I'm praying for you. Know that you're not alone. Jesus is there to hear your cries and to help you get through this. 

"For we do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but one who has similarly been tested in every way, yet without sin. So let us confidently approach the throne of grace to receive mercy and to find grace for timely help."