God is just so, so good, isn't He?
He knew my pain and my uncertainty, took them and carried them, and reminded me of a couple truths I needed to realize.
Firstly, I had a friend come to me with a hurting heart recently and I wanted to do all I could do ease that pain for her. Grieving makes me selfish, yet focusing on her heart put my own in perspective. It allowed me to stop looking at the fog surrounding me and instead look up. Look up at Jesus and focus on His Light, which then laser beamed through that fog and zeroed in on the person I was praying for. Once I stopped only looking at myself, it wasn't long before I felt energized again! The fog isn't completely gone away, I have to be honest about that. I think that grief-fog is going to be around for a good long while. But it's not so dense anymore. It's more wispy and floaty, not the heavy thickness of prior. And even more amazingly, it was only a matter of minutes for my feelings to turn around. I only had to have one, small (yet huge) conversation, wherein my focus immediately stopped looking at me. As I drove home a little bit later, I could tell a difference. It was small, but definitely there.
And secondly, I was reading a new fiction book the other night and I reached almost to the end when I, literally, felt a blip in my heart and was forced to stop reading because the tears started. I was so unprepared for that! But in a good way. :) The particular passage I had been reading referenced the story of Jesus raising Lazarus from the dead. And these are the innocent words which struck me in that moment:
"Before Jesus performed His big fancy miracle, He met those sisters in the middle of their pain, and He wept alongside 'em."
I had forgotten this one, gloriously beautiful thought. Jesus knows my pain. He has felt my pain. He knows it so much better than anyone else here could ever possibly understand! And He's weeping with me.
Ah, the flutters of my heart when I read that again. Jesus doesn't expect us to carry any of this alone! In fact, He's right there beside us long before we ever even ask. He wipes our tears, cradling each one, and knows exactly what we're feeling. He's been there. (I mean, do any of us think He didn't feel pain when He went to the cross? Of course not. I think both the Father and the Son were heart-broken that day.) He has a fix for our pain, absolutely! (Himself.) But before He moves in any big way, He always, always first gathers us in, acknowledges our hurt, and guides us to remember that He is big enough to handle it. He is big enough to carry these holes in our hearts. He. Is. Big. Enough. For every bit of it!
That hugely comforting thought slipped down into a crack in the wall of fog around my heart and split it wide open! And my tears...ah, my tears.
God is good, friends. He never gives up on us.
And I am grateful beyond words.