Friday, April 22, 2011

Good Friday Thoughts

"The Lord is my shepherd, I shall not want.
He makes me lie down in green pastures, 
He leads me beside the still water, 
He restores my soul.
He guides me in the path of righteousness
for His name's sake.
Even though I walk through the valley
of the shadow of death,
I will fear no evil, for you are with me;
your rod and your staff they comfort me.
You prepare a table before me in the presence
of my enemies.
You anoint my head with oil;
my cup overflows.
Surely goodness and love will follow me
all the days of my life.
I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever."
-Psalm 23

The Nicene Creed speaks of the seen and the unseen. My mom and I have talked about this many times in one of our great many discussions about faith, the spiritual world and heaven. Many times in the last month since Georgiana's death I have keenly felt a battle going on around me between the unseen--angels, saints and yes, even demons. I have felt this battle for my soul, in the darkest moments of the night, when I feel on the edge of despair, when I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, when I have asked God why He did not take me instead, when I have begged Him to take me now instead of my child and return her to life.

It's funny, though, how faith works. Jesus asks us for the faith of a mustard seed, for faith like a child, and I have that.

I do not believe Georgiana's death here on earth was God's intent. She died to her earthly body, which is an evil, the result of the fallen world we live in. But I also know Jesus took her to be with Him, and that is how His saving grace transforms all that is ugly and makes it beautiful. Beauty for ashes. 

The day after she was born, I stood in the shower in my hospital room and found myself talking and praying to God. I also remember very clearly saying to the evil surrounding me--"you will not win."  

I understand this when it comes to my soul. Satan wants me to give into despair and turn from God. This is how one-sided evil is, though. It doesn't understand the capacity of human beings to reach for God, for the Savior they were created for. In this horrific tragedy, which I hope and pray is the worst I ever have to endure, my entire being has turned towards God. I am no longer afraid of death. The shield of Christ is so much more than any despair or sadness I feel for all of us who miss my daughter.

I am reminded of King David, who lost his infant son only days after he was born. When the elders told David his baby had died, he washed, changed his clothes, and praised God.

So this is what I do. I wash, I change clothes, and I praise God. I take each painful step knowing I am walking in His grace. I suffer each day taking comfort in God's promise that heaven is beyond anything we ever could imagine or dream.

I know this Easter will be very hard. There is no escaping it, just like there is no escaping this grief and pain. I wanted to give my first daughter her first Easter basket, and that makes my insides feel shattered into a thousand pieces to think that I will instead have to take flowers to her little grave. 

But then I have to remind myself of what Easter is really about. Easter, in the end, is not the Garden of Gethsemane. It is not about the tears of blood Jesus cried, or the tears that I cry. It is not about the waking nightmare I am in right now.  Easter is about the Resurrection, the glorious moment when Christ saved us all, about His promise that we would be with Him in eternity. 

Easter is God's triumph over sin and death. It is about life.

Easter is why I know my little one is with Jesus.

Easter is hope.

Georgiana, my saint with the beautiful name, my daughter, how I miss you. How my heart and soul ache to see you again. I am broken and walking with a heavy cross. But I know you are walking among the fragrant lilies of the valley and you are happy, little one. Happy Easter, baby girl. I love you forever, Mama

1 comment:

  1. Katie & Dave, your faithfulness and love in the midst of such struggle and grief are an amazing reminder of God's loving promises to us and our hope for the future. We remember Georgiana with you. I am amazed at the mystery of our faith that would allow someone in grief to still say that "my entire being has turned towards God." I'm so thankful you've shared that with us. -Meg