The Ministry of Listening

Sometimes the best help we can give is a sensitive heart and a listening ear. Let’s remember to listen. Anton Chekhov understood a newly bereaved parent’s compelling need to talk about their loss. Here are excerpts form his short story, Misery. “With a look of anxiety and suffering Iona’s eyes stray restlessly among the crowds…… Continue reading The Ministry of Listening

Another Year Closer

-Excerpt from my book Never Ceasing: God’s Faithfulness in Grief In cutting his earthly life short, God has withheld no good thing from our Hans. For the Christian, to die is gain, and Hans has surely gotten the better end of the deal. He is basking in the light of God’s presence, utterly shielded from…… Continue reading Another Year Closer

One Common Song

How divinely full of glory and pleasure shall that hour be when all the millions of mankind that have been redeemed by the blood of the Lamb of God shall meet together and stand around Him, with every tongue and every heart full of joy and praise! How astonishing will be the glory and the…… Continue reading One Common Song

Persevering

I see you. The one who is grieving this Christmas. You are missing someone today, someone you love. Someone who is gone from your sight. And it hurts. But still you sing. You buy the presents. You smile. You make the cookies. You praise God because He is worthy. And because it is Christmas. And…… Continue reading Persevering

If We Could Hear Them Singing

BELLS ACROSS THE SNOWO Christmas, merry Christmas,Is it really come again,With its memories and greetings,With its joy and with its pain!There’s a minor in the carolAnd a shadow in the light,And a spray of cypress twiningWith the holly wreath tonight.And the hush is never brokenBy laughter light and low,As we listen in the starlightTo the…… Continue reading If We Could Hear Them Singing

Mission Accomplished

I do not believe that Hans will suffer a loss of reward simply because his earthly life was short. His time here was relatively brief, but it was complete; therefore, there was no longer any reason for him to stay among us. Instead, it was ordained of God that Hans should continue his life in…… Continue reading Mission Accomplished

No surrender

An excerpt from Never Ceasing: God’s Faithfulness in Grief … So, I must wait, but waiting does not have to mean stagnating. The Lord still has business to conduct in His universe. There are people yet to be born and souls yet to be saved. The time I have left is shorter than it feels;…… Continue reading No surrender

In My Father’s House

Hans spent most of his life right here at home in the house he grew up in. Of course, he went places and did things; he spent his first birthday in California while we were there visiting family. But, other than that, he never left Alaska. He never “got his own place”; never had to…… Continue reading In My Father’s House

Streams of Mercy, Never Ceasing

We sang ‘Come Thou Fount of Every Blessing’ at Hans’s memorial service. Surprisingly, I was able to sing, too, though my heart was splintering into little pieces. It was important to me that I sing that day. I wanted to do it for the Lord. I wanted to do it for Hans. The title of…… Continue reading Streams of Mercy, Never Ceasing

The Joy Set Before Us

The joy set before us should shine upon our souls as the sun shines through clouds, glorifying them. We should cherish sacredly and tenderly, the memory of our Christian dead but should train ourselves to think of them as in the home of the blessed, with Christ, safely folded, waiting for us. Thus, the bright…… Continue reading The Joy Set Before Us

According to His Will

And this is the confidence that we have in him, that, if we ask any thing according to his will, he heareth us: And if we know that he hear us, whatsoever we ask, we know that we have the petitions that we desired of him. 1 John 5:14-15 Every prayer I have ever uttered…… Continue reading According to His Will

Unsubmissive Remembering

“Yet there is a way of remembering sorrow, which brings no blessing, no enrichment which does not soften the heart, nor add beauty to the life. There is an unsubmissive remembering which brings no joy, which keeps the heart bitter, which shuts out the sunshine, which broods over losses and trials. Only evil can result…… Continue reading Unsubmissive Remembering

Is My Child in Heaven?

When just a small boy, God saved Hans from the penalty and power of sin, assuring him a place in Heaven based on faith in Jesus’ death, burial, and resurrection. So, when we say we will see Hans again, our level of assurance is quite high. But what about the parent who does not have…… Continue reading Is My Child in Heaven?

Just For Me

Bouncing around at the base of the hill, across the river that lay frozen between the fireworks techs and us spectators on the dock, was a light. A flashlight. A very bright flashlight. I saw the stream of light widen and play upon the hillside. Then the beam narrowed into a tightly focused square-shaped beam.…… Continue reading Just For Me