Thursday, October 23, 2008

Yes Lord

I'm in a blogging mood tonight. So often I don't have the emotional energy to come and type but sometimes I get these energy bursts and it's good for me to "get it all out." "It" being all the things( feelings, emotions, thoughts) that have been swirling around in my mind and life the past few weeks. The bottom line...I'm struggling. I would venture to say that losing a child has got to be the hardest thing anyone could endure and I'm truly broken for anyone trying to do it without Jesus.

Habakkuk 3:17-19

"Though the fig tree should not blossom nor fruit be on the vines, the produce of the olive fail and the flock be cut off from the fold and there be no herd in the stalls, YET I WILL rejoice in the Lord; I will take JOY in the God of my salvation. God, the Lord, is my strength; He makes my feet like the deers, He makes me tread on high places."

So my trip to Chicago. Hard and good at the same time. I'm glad I went but the reminders of my Lew were everywhere, staring at me, causing me to weep many times. The friends houses she played in, the restaurants we went to, our route we took to Children's day out...all of it just hard to take. I cried as the plane landed in Chicago and I cried when it took off to come back to Alabama. It was like saying goodbye to her all over again, I guess because that's where her life was. I couldn't go back to my house there..not this trip. Maybe next time.

At the women's conference Nancy Leigh DeMoss shared Romans 11:33...

"Oh, the depth of the riches of the wisdom and knowledge of God. How unsearchable his judgements, and his paths beyond tracing out! Who has known the mind of the Lord? Or who has been his counselor? Who has ever given to God that God should repay him? For from him and through him and to him are all things. To him be the glory forever! Amen."

This is it for me.....that out of all this pain.....that we would begin to go deeper in our understanding of the riches that are ours in Christ. The depth of his riches, the depth of his wisdom and knowledge....we only scratch the surface in this life because he is beyond tracing out! Nothing is too big or too hard for Him, no pain is too great. And it's all for His glory.

When I'm in the grocery store or any public place where a song is playing, after I leave(even it it's several hours later) I always catch myself humming the song that I heard...random songs that I may not have heard for years. Songs really do stick in your head. The first song on my Playlist has been in my head the past few days and I'm amazed again at how God even uses the little things. The chorus...."At the cross I bow my knee, where your blood was shed for me, there's no greater love than this....You have overcome the grave, your glory fills the highest place, what can separate me now?

At the cross I bow my knee.....I have walked around the house singing this without even realizing the words. My flesh doesn't want to bow or bend..I don't like this path.... actually, I hate it. When I got home from Chicago there was another laundry basket of Alaina's things to go through...her dresses, shoes, even her little bag of bible school candy....and there was a gravestone that needed to be picked out...Am I really doing this? Please don't ask me to. Everyday is a surrender. Everyday is submitting to this plan. It is a painful, slow surrender but my heart wants to be there. I could never do it without Jesus because there wouldn't be a cross to come to. This cross causes me to say, even if only in a crying whisper, "OK Lord." This was one of the challenges from our conference. "Are you willing to say, Yes, Lord?" Yes Lord, I'll follow you no matter what. Yes Lord, I will obey. Yes Lord, I'll go through more of Alain's things, I'll pick out her gravestone, I'll love my children, I'll get out of bed. Because of the grace you've given, I will do it.

And just when I think it can't get any harder we get to a new layer. The past two days Elley has talked about Alaina so much. These are her words..."Mama, I miss Alaina....Daddy said she's never coming back. Will we ever see her again? She's never coming back? Why? I miss Alaina." These same words several times a day. My heart feels like it's going to explode. Yes Lord, I'll have this conversation. Yes Lord, I will bend my knee. I'm thankful Elley wants to talk about her sister and is maybe truly grieving for the first time.

So, like the Habakkuk verse in my life...Though these awful, painful things, I will rejoice in the Lord and find my joy in him. No, I can't rejoice in losing Lew but I will rejoice in who God is and how he has carried me this far.

Wendy,(if you're reading this) I had to look back at all the great cards you've sent to find these words. I love this song....Thank you for reminding me.

"Take my hand, precious Lord, lead me on, let me stand. I am tired, I am weak, I am worn. Through the storm, through the night, lead me on to the light. Take my hand, precious Lord, lead me home."


Aimee said...

My heart hurts and aches with you.

Continuing to pray that God will give you abundant grace each morning.

"He is the source of every mercy and the God who comforts us."
2 Cor. 1:3

Beth Scott said...

My heart aches for you. I just want to come and put my arms around you and hold you. I can't imagine how hard it is to keep going, to keep saying, "yes,Lord", But His mercies are new EVERY morning. Thank God we only have to face each day as it comes. 'Each day has enough trouble of it's own'. And for each day, each hour, each second, He has promised to give us all the grace we need to go through it. I know this doesn't take away your incredibly deep pain, or lesson the emptiness you feel, but I hope that you can feel His love and arms around you and the love of your friends. He WILL continue to carry you and your sweet family.
Thank you for sharing your heart. We love you and Billy and the kids so much. Yall are all in my prayers.

The Hannahs said...

My constant thoughts and prayers continue for you and your family. I know that you are "covered up" with support from everyone, everywhere. Just please know that this old childhood friend is right here, too. As I have said in the past, I am always simply a phone call away. All my love, sweet "Hopey."

Robyn said...

I am so sorry for your pain. I don't know you but I can only check your blog sometimes because I cry EVERY time I see the pictures of your children. I am praying for you and your family.

Jer. 29:11

Brandi Barnes Parten said...

Precious Hope, we are still praying and loving you and your family.

Anonymous said...

Billy and Hope,
Please know we are praying for you. We would like for you guys to come over to visit with us. Maybe when Will (aka Bubba) and Lisa come over you can meet them here.
Love ya.
Bill and Becky Richburg

Ashlie said...

Amen! his grace IS evident in you....

Anonymous said...

I think I've commented one other time, I'm not sure... I've read your blog several times and have always been so moved by your words... moved to pray, moved to cherish each day with my own children, moved to worship our Father for all that He is... Know that you and Billy and all of your children are in our thoughts and prayers.

If you are in need of some comic relief, I sure wish I had a video of myself while reading your blog yesterday. We've had a cold virus running through our family... I was lazing around and cyber-surfing when I was led to your blog for the first time in several weeks... in my pj's, hair a mess, couldn't breathe already and then I was pouring out tears. Then I really couldn't breathe. Trying to talk, I sounded like I had cotton balls shoved up my nose. Dieter is the sappy one in our family... I was crying way worse than he does watching Extreme Makeover Home Edition! Mary Claire (our 2 y.o.) kept looking at me like I had completely lost it... probably wondering what in the world her mom was doing staring at the computer and bawling. But in all seriousness, I just can't imagine how agonizing the pain and grief must be from losing a child. Your words are so real and honest; thank you for sharing your heart with the rest of us.

I love seeing your pictures. Your children are all so beautiful. I know God will continue to carry you as you travel this long, bumpy road. I pray that each day He will lead you to draw deeply from His well, to quench your thirst for Him each and every day!

Marty Paulson

Greetings from Bulgaria said...

Your willingness to be transparent in your struggles and pain are an encouragement. It is evident that God is with you and your faith is real and growing. Thank you for sharing and continuing to walk in humility before the body of Christ. I am praying for you all- especially your kiddos.


PS- I hope school is going well.

Lisa West said...

My family continues to pray for you and your family. You are in our thoughts daily.

Lisa, Brian, Mackenzie
& Madison West

Anonymous said...

hope, you are on my mind tonight, and in my prayers. i pray that God will give you peace tonight and joy in the coming week. I still pray for that new normal and that it will come quickly. You are an awesome inspiration to so many of us who check on you via this blog. I can be feeling blah and complaining with aches and pains, and read your blog and God speaks through you and my heart is touched. He is using you Hope. Just know that.
I love you and I am so proud of the woman you've become.
Mrs. Cowan

davis dawkins said...

I don't ever know what to say-your blog is beautiful to God and to so many-because you are real and obedient through His grace. We love you guys so much and hurt to think of your pain. I always want you to know that we are praying for you every day. We are committed to praying for you for a long time. Your children (all 4) are beautiful! They will never forget your faithfulness to them in this time-they will be able to pull upon the strength God has given you in their futures-not a little thing. Love, Christine and Davis

Robin said...

Sweet Hope, my mond can't even know the pain you are feeling. Thank God we have his grace and love. I think of you and Billy so much and I pray for your mother, cause I am a grandmother and I know it must hurt her so deeply. I am wxcited you are coming to Dothan and can be surrounded by your friends. Hope it is a time to let go and just be what you are..deeply broken and longing for some relief from the pain. I pray for laughter and songs and sweet times with those who love you and understand that you will never be the same..ever...but you will love and laugh and find solace in those who know you and grieve with you.

Robin Brookshire...Lauren and Lucy's mom...

The Veenstra Family said...

Hope and Billy,

Upon one knee, lifting your names to Him.

It was so nice to see you during your trip to Chicago. Hope, Sorry if I squeezed your hand too hard, just didn’t want to let go. We miss you all so much. Give Billy a big hug from all the men of GG and while you’re at it, give one to yourself.

Dan V.

Shea said...

Still thinking of you, still praying so hard!!! I pray for grace, for strength for peace for you and Billy. I'm praying for Holden and Elley too. I know this has to be a difficult time for them as well, missing her so much. All our love to you!

Anonymous said...

Dear Hope,

You dont know me but I have been drawn to your blog ever since this happen to your family and ever time I come here I feel the spirit of god and am most always brought to tears. You and your family are such a family of faith my heart breaks for you all and Im not sure I could walk thru this like you have. Your children are so beautiful. I just wanted to say thanks for being so open and honest with your faith.

Laura said...

I think about you guys and pray for you all of the time. YOu have been especially on my heart and mind this morning. Can you post your email address on my blog comments? Talk to you soon.

Kristin said...

My heart is so heavy for you, Hope. We still have Mary Helen's birth announcement on our refrigerator with your four precious children loving on her. I look at it every day as I'm getting ice out of the freezer or milk out for cereal... All of you are in our thoughts and prayers each day. May the "God of all Comfort" meet you right where you need Him each day... each hour... each minute.

Love you.

Kim said...

I love you friend!

God brings you to mind so often, and so we continue to pray for grace upon grace upon grace.... to meet you moment by moment.


Michael and Jennifer Werneth said...

ive read your blog several times, but can't bring myself to comment. but i am now b/c i do want you to know that i am continuing to pray for you, for billy. elley has especially been on my heart this week too. i know that your heart feels like it will explode answering such tough questions from elley. how can she understand when we don't either? all i think is that when we know nothing else, we still know Him. i love that you still know that He is big enough, strong enough to carry you and your whole family. losing a child has to be the hardest, the worst thing. even imagining what youre going through is excruciating. i dont understand this path that you have to walk but i know that "His love can never fail." you are such a reflection of God to me. im continuing to pray...
p.s. a verse of one more hymn:
"Jesus! What a help in sorrow! While the billows o'er me roll,
Even when my heart is breaking,
He, my comfort, helps my soul.
Hallelujah! What a Savior!
Hallelujah! What a friend!
Saving, helping, keeping, loving,
He is with me to the end."

nan said...

You cross my thoughts often. I stop and pray often. Thank you for the update on your blog. IT helps me know what to pray for.

Anonymous said...

My Dear, You don't know me, but I feel so close to your heart. I am so happy, thrilled, that you have a close, loving realionship with, Our Lord. My friend lost her child over 20 yrs. ago. She doesn't know our Lord. My heart hurts daily for her and her pain. Even though I don't know you,dear, my prayers go out to Our God for your entire family. May you search and find Gods love and peace. You are special. In his love, Gail

Anonymous said...

I thought of you and your family today and prayed for you.

Jason and Susie said...

Still praying for you guys. I would love to give Billy a call. Just shoot me an email at

Jason Tucker

Trisha said...

Hope, I have been reading your blog for some time now and am amazed at your courage and wisdom at such a young age. I admire your strength and your abundant faith. You are truly an inspiration to me. I pray for you and Billy as you face each day. As you know, Gods mercies are new every day. I hope you enjoy life in the country. I love the quiet Lavaca. God Bless you--Mrs. Trisha