Heather Gray

Flawed...but loved anyway.

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Shattered Life

Shattered Life
When life shatters into a thousand pieces, you have three choices.
One, you can crawl into a hole and sleep away and days and nights (literally or figuratively).  Be a shell of who you once were.  Find no joy, no love, no light, and no laughter.  Be among the walking dead.  (And I'm not talking zombie flicks here, either.)  If you've ever known someone who's taken a hard hit in their life and pulled in on themselves like this – or if you've ever been that person yourself – then you know exactly what I'm talking about.
Two, you can rush around frantically trying to pick up the pieces of your shattered life.  Try to put them back together again.  Remember what life was like before and work so hard to fit the pieces back exactly the way they were so that everything will be normal again.  You might pretend nothing bad has happened and that everything is "fine, just fine."  You probably make yourself smile even though you feel like you're dying inside, but behind that smile is brokenness.
Three, you can grab on tight to Jesus and trust that He will put the pieces of your life back together.  It won't be the life you had before.  It won't look, feel, taste, or smell the same.  But it will be life.  After all, His very purpose is to give us life – full, abundant, and overflowing (John 10:10).  He's the most qualified person to pick up and put back together the pieces of your shattered life.  He's there to comfort you, encourage you, and sometimes even push you (when called for) back into the world of the living.
Wouldn't it be awesome to be that person who grabs onto Jesus and never lets go?
I'll be honest with you.  I've been the person to crawl under the rock, try to put her own life back together, and grab onto Jesus.  It's not cut and dry.  Or black and white.  And even those who have a strong faith and know Jesus is the answer to their pain…even they will sometimes slide off that path and into a place of deep hurt where they pull in on themselves, curl up in a ball, and cry like a baby.  Or desperately try to recapture what their life was like before it fell to pieces.
That's just the way it is.  The journey of grief – whether you're grieving a lost life, career, marriage, or anything else – is not a straight line.  Because we're messy, sloppy, upside-down, backward, lovely, wonderful people.  I've learned to be okay with that.  I hope you can too.
Let me tell you something important.
If you're curled up in a ball, with your arms tightly wrapped around your knees and your hands locked into place as you're racked with sobs – it's really hard to hold onto Jesus.  But that's a good time for Him to hold onto you.  Whether or not you feel Him, I'm willing to bet He's there, wishing with all His heart that you'd let Him comfort you.
If you're running around like a crazy person trying to pick up the pieces of your shattered life, trying to put them back together, trying to recapture a life that is forever lost – your hands are so full of those broken pieces you insist on picking up that you can't grab onto Jesus.  I believe with all my heart, though, that He's right there, wanting to take your hands in His so He can reassure you that everything will be okay.
Think of the woman who followed Jesus through the town and fought her way through the crowd so that she could get close enough to simply touch the hem of His garment.  She had enough faith to believe if she only touched His hem, she would be healed.  In the end, though, it wasn't touching the Savior's garment that healed her.  He chose to heal her because of her faith, because she believed in Him so completely.
Maybe I don't quite have as much faith as that woman.
Or maybe I just have a different kind of faith.
I don't want to touch the hem of His garment.  I want to grab on to His heavenly robes with both hands and never let go.  Because I know…I know…that's the only way I'll have peace in this world.  I can't put my life back together.  My daughter is gone, and no matter how I try to shape these pieces into something good, all I can see are my failures.  I couldn't heal her, and I can't bring her back.  No matter how I try to rebuild my life, there will always be a gaping hole that reminds me of what I've lost.
If I hold on tight to Jesus, though, then I'm implicitly saying I trust Him to put the pieces of my life back together.  And He can shape my life into something wholly beautiful.
He can turn it into a masterpiece.
We all handle grief in different ways.  One of the ways I've handled mine is by deciding I want to celebrate my daughter's life and honor her memory.  I want to live my life in a way that would make her proud.  I couldn't choose to crawl under a rock and hide from the world or try to rebuild that which was lost to me.  Instead, I made the choice to grab ahold of my Savior.  And I trusted.
It's not a perfect journey.  Because I'm one of those upside-down, backward, messy, sloppy people, I still have days when I slide off that path and find myself somewhere else.  When that happens, I pick myself back up, flex my fingers, and grab on tight again.  Jesus never leaves my side.  Even when I let go, He's right there with me, through the good days and the bad, the celebrations and the sorrows.  He's always within reach.  And for that, I thank Him.
But I have hope when I think of this: The Lord's love never ends; His mercies never stop; they are new every morning. Lord, Your loyalty is great. I say to myself, "The Lord is mine, so I hope in Him." (Lamentations 3:21-24)


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You will never know how much I was meant to read this .....I have been so very sad Since Saturday over Cliff and His Son Ryan also so misses him... Dr David Jeremiah said to me via mobile Proverbs 3:5 <3

I'm glad this post includes the fact that we have many losses to grieve. We don't have to lose someone to experience loss. When you have a dramatic change in your life and have to give up, or move past, a loved part of your life ... you really should grieve that loss, but many of us dont't. We are simply taught not to. These are smaller holes than the loss of a loved one, but holes nonetheless. And when you have many small holes in your life that you've ignored (from job losses, monetary losses, health issues, etc) you can create a perfect storm.

This is a post that everyone can benefit from reading, not just those suffering from the loss of a loved one.