by Mark Williams
When we lose a partner with whom we may have been linked for decades, we can really feel alone, especially when we believe in God. Strange isn’t it?
Wait a minute, Markus. Are you saying we were abandoned because, well, I kind of feel that way now that you bring this up.
Our faith says we are not, but sometimes it can be really quiet, especially by His side. In our faith the Bible tells us in Deuteronomy 31: “He will never forsake you or forsake you” – never. So why does it feel that way? When we ask God and hear nothing, doubts arise.
I think maybe calm is the answer? Maybe part of the answer anyway.
In these times – quiet times when we believe what He says, as in Psalm 46 – we must choose be still and believe I am God.
It’s not bad, this doubting. God knew we would do it from the start. So he gave us a way to him – Jesus. In Pastor John Lynch’s book On My Worst Day, this title takes us through God’s relationship with his child and how He is with us on our worst day. Lynch paraphrases God – “I have this – I have you, child.” God is God. But he is personal with us – in us. As we read in 2 Timothy 1:14: “Keep the good that has been entrusted to you – keep it with the help of the Holy Spirit who lives IN us” (emphasis added).
God is in us!
“Oh yes? You can do it? You who kidnapped my partner, did you?”
“Yes I do.”
You wake up wondering if you’ve slept at all. You thought you fell asleep sometime during the night because your neck hurts from sleeping, but you are still tired, like bone-tired, more than you thought when you went to bed. Whenever that was. I’m talking about losing a life partner, but it could be the same with other traumas. You just want to breathe again.
So you spend your time in this new climate and try to change and adapt. A new routine begins.
Admiral William McGraven wrote a book on routine. It’s on my bedtime reading pile. It’s a little book. I don’t think it’s 100 pages. He said start every day with a win by making up your bed – every day.
Good advice I found out – make your bed.
“Ah, Mark, I’m not making my bed. I’ve never made my bed before. Why should I start now? I like the idea of pulling the sheets over my head and trying again to smell my partner’s scent. I don’t want to make my bed. It’s a stupid way to start the day. “
Then don’t make your bed.
“Oh. But you said-“
Yes, it won’t make the world a rainbow right away. Gosh, you’re making your bed right now. But it is a start. Instead of making your bed, it could be a walk or something else – anything. It’s a start to another day of trying to figure out your life. Oh, and by the way, you talk to Dad – the god of the universe, when you do.
God’s plan is for us to be redeemed. Saved through his Son’s sacrifice on the cross. Someone had to write a check for our sin infection. Jesus decided that he would do it – for all of us. We just have to receive it. It is a beginning. In Matthew 11 he tells us to take his egg yolk. It is light, and although an egg yolk is a load harness, it is a light load compared to the one we carried. And in our faith, His plan is centered on you. Dad has nothing but love for you – me. Even if you abuse him and doubt him. He knew you would do it before this rock we live on was solid. He wants you to give him breath. He loves you and wants your pain.
All of it.
It draws him closer. Imagine the god of the universe coming down to live in you. Just you. It’s not a group thing. It’s all about you What then makes up everything about him. Maybe you go for a walk after you’ve made your bed. God loves walks, especially with you. Imagine you are walking with, well, GOD around the block. Or cook something. Or go ahead. Or just sit on the back porch. He will meet you wherever you need to meet him.
If you and your partner have been doing family things, you may need to cover them up. No, sometimes it won’t be nice. My wife could care for much better. I can do things through I. I will meet my children and grandchildren and friends where they need me to meet them. See? I model God and didn’t even realize it. You see him and Jesus through me! That’s big – really big.
Maybe we’ll just go for a walk.
Or I’ll show them how to make their bed.
It’s like having permission to wander for a moment into a world of forbidden life with chocolate cake for breakfast with that special person their parents only whisper about in the kitchen. You smile, maybe for the first time in a long time. They do not care. You’re the one.
And you realize – God smiles.
Then you catch yourself smiling. And maybe you haven’t thought about the dumpster fire you live in for a few minutes.
He used worldly things to lift you up and move you and give you some joy. Not much. Bit by bit. It was him all along!
And it all started with a son and his father. In your head you picture the son saying to his father:send me.