Posted in Christian living, communication, grief, health and wellness, Life, Love, Uncategorized

Re-living the Pain of Tragedy – Grief revisited

crying lady

With all the blogs, posts and comments regarding the latest mass shooting of people in the United States, it is tempting to enter the debate on why? but I will not get into that. Evil is evil! The tools to deliver evil intent will always be found.

My thoughts run to those who have walked this path before – too many of them. The LA shooting, Orlando, Sandy Hook, Columbine, Virginia Tech, the list goes on. So many have lost so many!  Can you imagine the pain each of them feels when something like the Valentine’s Day tragedy occurs again?

It would be like an almost healed wound being torn open again with fresh bleeding gushing out.

The reliving of dread as you hear through social media or friends or television that there is a shooting. The pain of the wait to know if your child or loved one is among the injured or dead. The agony of having to identify the shattered body of those who you saw only that morning wave their last farewell or kissed you on the cheek. The perpetual internal and external screams as you realize the finality of the outcome. Then the ongoing daily pain of grief flowing over you, only to be followed by anger and bitterness toward whoever is to blame for your loss.

Walking the path of the broken as you buried ones whose lives were cut short: Comforting others as you yourself struggle for answers and the what-ifs: Struggling with the knife of grief cutting through your heart every day as you struggle with survivor guilt and the pain of loss: The pain of obscurity as the focus shifts to the next group of victims and your pain is shelved with the faces of the quickly forgotten: These emotions are all that you have to look forward to in the aftermath.

There are few words to say at a time like this for those who are re-living all of those emotions. I have not walked in your shoes. I can not offer wisdom into a situation I don’t understand. I can offer the professional advice for grief management and these are helpful but your journey is your journey.

All I can offer are the words of the wonderful and truthfilled Psalm 23:

Yea though I walk through the valley of the Shadow of Death I will fear no evil because You are with me.

Evil can try to crush but love will prevail! He is with you at this time.

There is also the truth of His name – The Comforter, the Healer, the Prince of Peace.

Nothing can prepare us for the separation of death – It was not what we were created for. It is part of the death sentence of sin, but we can be assured that Jesus said, “He is the Way, the Truth and the Life.” The Devil comes to steal and destroy but He comes to bring us Life. He is Peace and although it may not feel like it right now, Peace and life will come. He is with you during this time of loss. It is times like this where your faith can bloom or shrivel. Faith is comfort.

Know that although I don’t understand your pain completely, myself and many others stand in prayer with you and those around you as you grieve again. We stand with you as you remember your loved ones and their loss. I may not know your name or who your loved one was but I still stand with you to offer you love, and prayer for strength as you face the tragedy again.

In love

Narelle until next time.

 

 

 

Posted in Christian living, Life, travel, Uncategorized

Tragedy of False Legacy

Recently I watched sadly as three hundred years of history was struck down with an excavator, hammer and crowbar, the rest was burned until absolutely nothing was left to tell the stories of yesteryear.

This house was built in the 1700’s. Now what was happening during that time?

Let’s take a look:

The British and Spanish were battling it out over territories

There were wars between the French and the Indians

The United Kingdom was formed and Britain started to expand the British Empire throughout the world

Alaska was discovered by Europeans

Hawaii was discovered by Europeans

Australia was discovered by Europeans

James Watt discovers the steam engine. Joseph Priestly and Daniel Rutherford independently discover nitrogen.

The American Revolution against Britain occurred.

The French Revolution occurs, ending in the execution of the king and queen and thousands of others.

This was an amazing era of discovery and change. On Capeville Drive, Virginia, in the Commonwealth of Virginia, a house was built: A two story, home of above moderate size and appearance for the period. I don’t know who built it or even the history of the area other than there were substantial cotton plantations in that period in that area. You can imagine the owner building a lovely home for his burgeoning family, filled with dreams and aspirations for their future in this brand new country.

It survived a civil war, surrounded by fields that you can easily imagine saw incredible pain and deaths.

It was bemused as modernization came and tractors replaced horse driven plows.

It continued to watch as its young men marched off to two world wars, and other wars in far off countries.

It observed in silence as its country faced civil unrest. It stood in awe as man walked on the moon and more space exploration took and amazing discoveries in science.

And then, it was left to decay. Families died or were dispersed. Pickers came and took whatever they could take to break up and sell. People took no notice as the large trees, and vines encroached and left it struggling to stand.

Then one day a few weeks ago, three hundred years toppled to the ground. We took what we could of any remaining good timbers to re-purpose in another old beauty, but the rest was shoveled up or burned along with the 200 year old pecan trees standing guard over history. It was a confronting sight. All because the owner, a farmer of crops needed to have an unobstructed path for his free-roaming irrigation system!

It had served its purpose and the foundations had long since become hazardous but she was still a magnificent lady who had endured so much! It felt like she deserved better.

But that is the end of all things in this world – decay, corrosion, and decline. King Solomon said it well that despite all of his wealth and wisdom everything is vanity because no matter what we amass the end result is we leave it to someone else. We can’t take it with us and ultimately it will all decay.  It made me think of the importance of leaving a truly lasting legacy! An eternal legacy!

Jesus says don’t lay up for yourself treasures on earth for that reason, but lay up for yourself treasures in heaven. What are those treasures? He is our treasure! Set our hope on the living God. Seek first the Kingdom of God and His righteousness.

Let’s pursue with diligence and energy the eternal things of life.

Until next time

Blessings Narelle `

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Posted in Christian living, Life, travel, Uncategorized

Goals for the year?

Ok…so my one goal to myself for this year is going to be to write something every day…That is about the only thing I will set in glue. The rest are just going to be plans…

My true goal though I have decided is to LOVE – that is what Corinthians tells us to do. Seek the best and Love is the best.

That is what I posted on Facebook for New Year,

so that makes it public and I am accountable, right? The funny thing was I met two amazing women at the local pub here on Eastern Shore in Virginia on New Years’ Eve  (only place open and didn’t want to sit out in the cold until 10pm to watch the crab pot fall…more on that later). I had posted about love that day and guess what we talked about for a couple of hours…you guessed it LOVE.

One girl has just divorced her husband and was feeling the pain. I mentioned about the love Paul the Apostle talks about in Corinthians 13! It turns out that was the verse they read at their wedding! More pain for her right there, as she felt that she had definitely not been walking in that realm of Love in her marriage.

Love is patient, kind, does not envy or boast, not arrogant, or rude. It does not insist on its own way; It is not irritable or resentful; it does not rejoice at wrongdoing; but rejoices with the truth. Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, and endures all things. Love never ends.

The next morning on the first day of the year whilst attending a gorgeous little Baptist church here in Cape Charles, with a couple of new friends, the pastor preached on  – you guessed it, a call to duty to LOVE.

So I think what I will do in the next few blogs is dissect just what love is, how we get it, and how do we walk in it.

We are fed so many lies from the world on love eg. It’s a feeling.  It goes away. It makes us completely happy – if it doesn’t it mustn’t be right; have changed; have no hope so time to move on.

So I am going to dissect all of the above thoughts on love and see how I fare this year as I endeavour to walk in the Fruit of the Spirit one of which is love and just see how that is worked out in my life.

Trust you will enjoy the journey with me..and comments will be welcome!

Until next time Narelle

20161231_214223
The Great Crab Pot Drop of Cape Charles. It is dropped or rather lowered from the crane. Taking over from the Time Square Ball…only in America
20161231_221641
The Two of Us in front of the crab pot
20161231_220323
The great Crab Drop of 2017
Posted in Christian living, Life, travel, Uncategorized

Faces on the Wall part 2

I wrote this earlier in the month but have been staying at a farm with no internet and snowed in…It is still relevant though.

Someone commented on my first post “Faces on the Wall” and said she couldn’t wait for the second installment of which I had not intended to write one. However, the last few days have prompted me to yet again contemplate just how our lives are a vapour.

20170107_110659
David’s famous Faces on the Wall.

My daughter started it with news of a young mum killed in a car accident leaving her two young children fighting for their lives, around Christmas. Then we saw all the faces of those in the entertainment industry or “famous” people who have passed this year including Prince, David Bowie and George Michael to name a few. Then in the past few days Carrie Fisher and for those who remember her Zsa Zsa Gabor. Carrie’s mum, Debbie Reynolds, one of my all-time favourites from the past, followed her daughter quickly afterwards.

So many famous faces fading away! Some are only youngish, in their 50’s and yes that is young despite the under 30’s disbelief. Some are in their golden years, 80 plus. But whatever the age their lives have all come to the same end, death.

Now this is not a great subject to bring up amidst the celebrations of Christmas and New Year but it is the most “real” reality there is! We will all face it. We all will only face it once! We will all have to suffer the absolute pain of losing a loved one. Death was not meant to be! We were created for everlasting life. Death came through sin, and the pain of death, physically and emotionally will be with us until the end of this age.

We all try to avoid the subject. We all try to avoid the inevitable, believing somehow that it will pass us by. But the bitter truth is that we will all go the way of death.

However, the truth of everlasting life and resurrection is what we are promised through Christ. He told Lazarus’s sister that if she only believed in Him, the Resurrection and the Life, she would see her brother again. By this time Lazarus had been dead for 4 days and had even been placed in a tomb. Martha was confused and thought Jesus meant at the end of time Lazarus would be resurrected, but in this case He meant He would raise Lazarus from the dead. Can you imagine the absolute fear, joy and wonderment of having your loved one come back to life after having buried them?

Our western culture is very anesthetized to death and sickness, keeping it all very secluded, separate and clinical, requiring anyone who has suffered a loss to complete their grieving as soon as possible so as not to make other people uncomfortable.

Other cultures are not so emotionally detached from death with various celebratory stages of grief continuing long passed the death of the person. Choosing to remember, celebrate, commemorate, and cry over their loss and the life of their loved ones.

But at the end, no matter how we do or don’t grieve death, I am much more concerned with how I live. Have I lived with purpose? Have I loved with purpose? Have I impacted my world to the best of my talents and abilities? At the end of time when I stand before my God, I want to hear Him say, “Well done good and faithful servant!” In the end that His approval is all that matters in life.

I can be rich; I can be poor; I can travel and do amazing things; I can stay in the same place all my life; I can be famous; I can be nobody that anybody recognizes; but if He doesn’t know me then my life has been in vain. It’s His voice I want to hear say, “I know you”.

My prayer for you today is that you will come to know Him so that you will be able to experience the Resurrection and the Life.  He is Life and without Him we are dead even if we are alive.

Talk again soon

Blessings Narelle

20161219_101032
A WW2 relief on the memorial in Washington. Death is a reality of the Battlefield.