This past weekend, a friend told me I was quoted on someone's Caring Bridge blog. The author of the Caring Bridge site is a mother who lost her daughter to leukemia less than a year ago. She recently posted my devotion, "So This is What Hard Feels Like."
Just so you know, I'm always honored when that happens. She was gracious to include my name with it, and that's all I ask.
Sunday morning, before church, I spent an hour reading about the diagnosis of her daughter's illness last September, and the life-threatening side-effects of the treatment, until this sweet child's passing just a short few months later. I grieved with her.
During those months, her younger child celebrated a birthday, and she wrote about the party they had for him. I imagined it was a bitter-sweet celebration, and she likely carried a bit of guilt for having a party for one child when another was ill. And yet it was worth celebrating. I think she did the right thing.
Although I've never met this mother, God connected us for a short time. I hope my devotion brought her hope and encouragement, but her story has impacted me as well. I was reminded again of the importance of celebrating life in the midst of hard times.
When I'm faced with a serious concern, I become obsessive. Just ask my kids when they are five minutes late. Actually, I even have the ability to turn a small concern into a big one in nothing flat. It's a gift, really.
Fixing the problem so consumes me that I forget to stop and celebrate the life going on around me. The reality is there are reasons to celebrate the everyday joys of life. All it would take is a pause, a prayer and a redirection of my focus. It's doesn't show a lack of concern or care - but an acknowledgement that there is still something worth my extra effort.
Today I'm realizing the value of celebrating in the midst of difficulty. There is good in my life. Lots of it. There are children who need to know they are valued and worth my time and effort. I have a husband who appreciates thoughtful gestures of love. Plus, I love my mother, sisters, their families and my friends. It's time to consider how to add everyday celebrations to my life in greater measure.
Life is precious and fragile, and not to be taken for granted. Just ask any mother who has lost a child.
Today I want Hannah Grace's mother to know that her daughter's life is impacting my family. And I say that to all my friends who have lost a child ... I'm specifically thinking of my friend Tammy and my sister Paula. Your children's lives had great meaning and God is still using them.
Will you join me in celebrating the everyday joys while we still can?
What do you have to celebrate today? Who in your life needs to be honored and celebrated? Leave a comment and we will all honor those are waiting for us in Heaven.
In His Love,