I Blog For Books

20 January 2009

Be Strong

One of my most vivid memories is my grandmother's funeral. I don't mean in any way to lessen the joy she brought us during her lifetime, but her passing was in many ways the first step into adulthood for me. I was 17 years old. (written 15 Nov 07)

I couldn't tell you how many people were at grandmother's funeral if I tried. It seems as if there were hundreds. I distinctly remember sitting on the left side of the church, crying. "Aunt" Pearl Cox came up behind me and placed her hands on my shoulders, squeezing slightly, and whispered "You need to be strong for your mama now." At the time, I didn't understand. All I knew was that my beloved grandmother was gone and it felt as if my heart would break. I didn't know how to be strong for mama, I couldn't even be strong for me!

Since that day, her words have returned to me in various ways. "You need to be strong" are words I heard without fully understanding as a teenager, and words I shed tears over as a new mother wondering how in the world I could be a good parent when I felt so incapable. I needed to be strong when I had to tell the kids that daddy had to go but would be back, and when I had to tell them that Papaw had died. I needed to be strong the night Nikki called me with tears in her voice to tell me that she was leaving for Iraq, and the morning I stood by her bedside clasping her hand as she gave birth to her beautiful baby girl. I watched Kathy's amazing strength during those dark days when daddy was so sick. Her strength came from the peace of knowing that daddy was going home to be with God. We have all had those times in our lives when we have had to be strong, and I am reasonably sure that I'm not the only person who has ever whispered those words in prayer begging Jesus for help.

How is it possible to "be strong" when you feel like your world is collapsing? If we need strength where do we go to find it? I have stumbled along, and fumbled my way through days without asking Jesus for help. Guess what I found? I found that asking Him FIRST made me much stronger!! It is not always easy to be strong, but with Jesus standing with us, we have His strength to lean on when we falter.

Jesus, thank you for the strength that you give me every day. I am blessed indeed to have your strength to lean on. Help me be able to strengthen others through you.

"Praise be to the LORD, for he has heard my cry for mercy. The LORD is my strength and my shield; my heart trusts in him, and I am helped. My heart leaps for joy and I will give thanks to him in song. The LORD is the strength of his people, a fortress of salvation for his anointed one."~Psalm 28:7-8 NIV

No comments:

Post a Comment