Grief + Healing

My dear aunt passed away a few months ago. I did not attend her funeral, but the Lord knows, as does she, I was present when it mattered.

Since then, I’ve been grieving. More importantly, I’ve been honest with God about my grief and have trusted Him with it’s appropriation. I’ve had days of super strength, days of stoic numbness, a few sudden with tears, and some with spurts of laughter. Today was laughter and tears. All days, gratefully, I’ve had peace.

Just this morning I met a lady that looked like my aunt did in her younger years. Man, it was so good to see her. She was listening to an audio book (something my aunt would be doing) and she had a lot of bags, and a lot of things in those bags (something like my aunt) lol. I chuckled to myself, teared up, and thanked God for the spurt of laughter. This is grief…coupled with healing.

I think it’s so important for us to not just stay stuck with our grief, but to also marry it with healing found purely in God, The Father. We can move past it properly this way. Do you know that it’s okay to move past it? Have you granted yourself permission?

For everything there is a season, a time for every activity under heaven…a time to cry and a time to dance. – Ecclesiastes 3:1-4

Now if it’s your season to cry buckets, I get it. By all means cry on without remorse! But if you know deep down in your heart, that you should have been dancing a long time ago, this is your opportunity to cast your care for real, for real…or again any way. Guilt is NOT from God. Never feel guilty for God’s favor. Feel GRATEFUL!

1 Peter 5:7 says: “Give all your worries and cares to God, for He cares for you.” Do you believe that?! So that means, yes, even though He allowed your loss to occur, God cares for YOU!! Is scripture going to be your foundation or are you going to believe a lie? The choice is yours.

Let’s not just carry this weight of grief. Let’s feel it in all of it’s gory, sometimes seemingly unreasonable pain and injustice. Ugh. Let’s release it unto God and release each other to process it in ways unique to ourselves.

Let’s give the devil a black eye and an eviction notice, telling him HE CAN’T RUIN OUR LIVES by causing us to tighten our grip in seasons we should be loosening it.

Let’s also pray for appropriation in our grief, so that it is not displaced; turning into bitterness, addiction, and who knows what else. Let’s not let it begin squatting on our hearts; extending past it’s seasonal expiration.

God wants you joyous! That’s one of the fruits of His spirit! And I would personally hate to see you skip past your happy season, because you’re holding on too long to the sad one. You know what I mean? I know you do.

Well, that’s all I really wanted to say. I don’t have a fancy punny ending or anything like that for this post. Oh! I did see an Instagram post be another person who was grieving. They suggested writing a letter to a loved one and releasing it in a balloon. I thought that was a pretty neat idea, and I think that will help me in my process. God-willing, we’ll do it, as writing was something special my aunt and I shared together. A letter seems swell.

In the meantime, pray for me while I pray for you. Enjoy this short clip of my aunt (Author and Speaker, Andrea Grayson) sharing her testimony at a Women’s Conference in San Diego a couple of years ago. Love her and you so much.

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The Results Are In… #Relationships #DealBreakers

I’ve been reflecting a lot on my relationships past and present and I slowly began coming up with a list of things I’ve learned about myself (likes and dislikes) as a result of them. So, I’ll call them The Results. Some of them I’ve learned, some have moved up or down in rank of importance, and some I’ve re-learned. Here it goes. Order has no significance.

1) I can wear flats for the rest of my life and be a happy camper ha. Ridiculously learned.

2) The absence of affection in a relationship with me is a deal breaker. I love being touched and if I tried, I bet I could remember every last one.

3) I really do love comedy. Such a beautiful ministry serving the best meds all day errday. Re-learned.

4) Emotional support and validity of feelings is a big need for me. Deal breaker. I didn’t know this until I didn’t have this. Sometimes I don’t need advice or something to be fixed. I just need a hug and a reminder that everything’s gonna be alright.

5) I don’t like doing the same thing over and over unless there’s a good reason. I’m adventurous and like to do spontaneous things big and small. Let’s Go!! Re-learned.

6) No matter how much I’ve been hurt, I know that I can love again, and even harder than before. It’s a miracle. Learned.

7) I’m old fashioned about a lot of things and the complete opposite about other things. I know, that kinda made no sense.

8) I believe a guy should always open doors for his lady (and walking down the stairs first is a plus). She’s his queen forever. Do it forever.

9) I believe a lady should serve her man his plate before her own if that’s his preference. He’s her king forever. Do it forever.

10) I’m a sucker for a gentleman (duh!) and I’m grateful to have been with one who set a standard for many things.

11) Speaking of standards, I have a hard time getting down with double standards.Ugh.

12) When a man is protective of me in a caring way I feel delicate and right; a purposed type of feeling. Love it. Learned.

13) I’d never ask for them, but I really like receiving flowers. In fact, I like them so much that I take random pictures of flowers all the time — I guess it’s my way of giving them to myself ha.

14) Quality time is my primary love language and my love tank is on E without it. Deal Breaker.

15) I’m a woman with a plan who loves a man with a plan.

16) I can’t compromise with a non-compromiser. Oddly, those are the ones who always seem to want you to compromise. They win without an argument. I don’t think there’s a valid justification. Deal Breaker.

17) Pleasant surprises are the best and make for excellent memories. Grateful to have some of those in my memory bank. Got Ginkgo Biloba?

18) I don’t like my man driving my car if he has one of his own. Matter of fact, If he doesn’t have his own, he’s not my man. LOL…Deal breaker. Learned.

19) I don’t like unexpected interruptions and change of plans. They’re inevitable, I know, but the ones that aren’t and are just a result of poor planning, inconsideration, or selfishness bother the heck out of me even if I don’t express it.

20) I believe a man should assume that he’s paying and be prepared to do so unless he’s told otherwise.

21) I’m still a planner and I still like to know all the details. I’m willing to compromise, but I would love for you to not make me lol. It has nothing to do with you and everything to do with who I am and how I’m wired. Truth.

22) I still can’t stand being cut off. I know many don’t, but I’ve come to the conclusion that I don’t because I’ve never been a big talker or one to waste my breath any way. So when I do choose to speak, it will be just as wise of you to listen to me as it is for me to choose the timing and content. Respect.

23) All of that goes out the window when I’m sleepy. Shut me up please lol.

24) I really like thoughtful gestures (both tangible & intangible). They’re gifts and non- verbal ways of communicating that I’m loved and still as special as the day you met me.

25) That being said, I loathe “I’m Sorry” gifts. Especially if you’ve never gotten me one for any other reason. Fellas, “Just Because” all the way..I’m tellin’ you!

26) I’m still not a tic for tac type of gal and I hope I never become that. That would be conditional love or expression.

27) A great preference of mine is to not go to bed upset or with unresolved junk and I put effort towards it. Proud of myself. Learned.

28) I can live out of a suitcase and travel with the love of my life forever. I guess my creative side enjoys the rustic challenge. Like making yourself look sexy and taking care of business with just that. Yup, that’s all I had. I know, somethin like a G (haha). Re-learned.

29) I need a man who will pray with me and for me. I need a man who loves the Lord as much as I do and will not compete consciously or unconsciously with that relationship. Deal Breaker.

30) I’m still a sensitive being and I don’t apologize. I’m grateful for the knowledge of #4 (scroll up) and I’m focusing on the pros.