Death Surrounds Me or I Will Carry You

Yesterday, it seems everywhere I turn death was brought to my attention.  Before church service I talked to a woman about her 90 years father’s anticipated death. In Sunday school we talk about times when we knew that God was with us in a middle of a storm. With tears I told them I knew God carried me the day we bury my brother-in-law ashes.  Just when I thought I pull it together again while cleaning up the church’s kitchen someone else mentioned something about several of my brothers-in-law being gone. The person didn’t know I just talked about it and my emotions were raw at the time. Fortunately for me a friend of mine did know and immediately embrace me through the conversation. Then, there was a visit to the nursing home where I run into my nephew’s girlfriend who didn’t know about my brother-in-law’s death, but recently she lost her young sister. The anniversary of my father’s death is coming up. To top everything off last night my husband had chest pains again. (I hope only due to heartburn. Today he is okay.)

How does one deal with all these emotions? How do we find a way to keep moving when there is pain?

The time leading up to us burying my brother-in- law ashes was very hard for me. There was a lot of conflict in the family which made the situation worst.  I would pray Father give me strength; carry me when my strength fails. One of my favorite poems is “Footprints in the Sand.” I would envision God carrying me through the storm. The day before the burial I was praying over my breakfast. A simple prayer with thoughts of what the next day would be like when a thought creep in of someday I’m going to have to go through this with my husband. My heart open to God asking you will be there to carry me through it?  There was a moment of silent. Then it happened…. I felt His presence beginning to surround me. With closed eyes, my mind saying, “Be still; be still… let it happen.”  He reached out and embraced me.  A whisper of words came….  “I will carry you…..” I stood there for a minute or two letting His strength and comfort fill me with a knowing that He will be with me no matter what would happen tomorrow or in the future.

Footprints in the Sand 
by Mary Stevenson
One night I had a dream.
I dreamed I was walking along the beach with the Lord..
Across the sky flashed scenes from my life..
For each scene, I noticed two sets of
footprints in the sand,
one belonging to me, and the other to the Lord..
When the last scene of my life flashed before me,
I looked back at the footprints in the sand.
I noticed that many times along the path of my life
there was only one set of footprints.
I also noticed that it happened at the very lowest
and saddest times in my life.
This really bothered me 
and I questioned the Lord about it:
“Lord, you said that once I decided to follow you,
you’d walk with me all the way.
But I have noticed that during the most
troublesome times in my life
there is only one set of footprints.
I don’t understand why
when I need you most you would leave me.”
The Lord replied:
“My precious child, I love you and would
never leave you.
During your times of trial and suffering,
when you see only one set of footprints, it was then
that I carried you.”
The answer to my questions.
Let God carry you.


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