"He shall feed his flock like a shepherd: he shall gather the lambs with his arm,
and carry them close to his heart, and shall gently lead those that are with young." Isaiah 40:11

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Our Family - September 29 2012

A BIG, BIG Thank-you to these people for Gifting us with A Family Photo Shoot! (Tabatha Kahn, Angela Krebs, Karen McQuade, Lisa Klix, Michelle Potts, Rachel Friesen, Chelsey Roberts) Two years ago, a friend of a friend met us at the Rotary Flames House and did a photo shoot with our daughter Rachel. It was a day or two after Rachel went through the very first of many heart 'spells', obviously a distressing experience for all of us. The pictures she took that day are still so precious. And this Fall, we were blessed by these family pictures! The lamb stuffy in the picture was Rachel's and for us represents the truth that she is still very much a part of our family and our hearts. Thank-you Rachel Friesen for the wonderful idea of including something of hers...

A few days ago, I was looking for ideas on how to end off the second book of the Blog and have it printed. And I came across the Funeral bulletin. Now the last two pages of Rachel's story holds this family picture and the following poem. I thought it was fitting...and I like it so much that I'm going to put it here too!

Nothing can make up for the absence of someone we love-

And it would be wrong to find a substitute-
We must simply hold out and see it through-
That sounds very hard at first but at the same time it is a great consolation-
For the gap-
As long as it remains unfilled-
Preserves the bond between us-

It is nonsense to say that God fills the gap-
God does not fill it-
But on the contrary keeps it empty-
And so helps us to keep alive our former communion with each other
Even at the cost of pain.
The dearer and richer our memories,
The more difficult the separation.

But gratitude changes the pangs of memory
Into tranquil joy.
The beauties of the past are borne,
Not as a thorn in the flesh,
But as a precious gift in themselves.

by Dietrich Bonhoeffer


Thursday, October 4, 2012


I know I said that my last post was going to be the last....but something happened last night that I want so much to remember....

I had a dream. At first it was just a bunch of crazy stuff that I won't bore you with, but then there was this part of the dream when it was me and a friend, a widow in our church, standing in a tent. We were each holding two balloons and I knew they symbolized our husbands who had both died. We were told to take them outside the tent. And we tried so hard. I remember how we would think we were at the edge of the tent and we would let the balloons go, only to have to retrieve them and keep walking....and the tent was so crowded that it was hard to see where we were going.

But then, suddenly we were outside. It is impossible to describe what I saw. Rolling hills waving in a myriad of colors of browns, reds, yellows. Beauty indescribable. The bluest sky ever. I had forgotten my friend beside me. All I knew was that God was there.  And that was enough. It was like every part of need in me was completely and totally filled.

It was so achingly beautiful. And I think it was a gift from Him, my ABBA Father. October has felt like a sad month. It took me awhile to figure out why it has felt this way. Maybe because subconsiously my body remembers that Rachel had her first spells in October. A friend photographed her only a day or two after her first one. And the same friend did our family pictures this October. (a wonderful generous gift from a group of people) I love that they gifted this to us. It was a meaningful and a healthy thing for us to do. We included a lamb stuffy as a reminder that Rachel is still a part of us. I don't regret doing them at all - but I think it was one of many triggers for me this month. I miss my daughter. I wish sometimes that she could be with us. I wish I could hold her and say good-bye. I regret that I didn't have the chance to do that.

And so I have prayed this past week that God would give me a dream of her. I felt desperate for her in a way I haven't in a long time. I believe in faith that she is really well and whole but I couldn't help asking to see her. And while He didn't give me the dream I asked for, I know that He gave me Himself. He is enough. His Grace is enough for me. And one day this ache is going to be filled up for good! I am so, so glad He gave me a little taste of what that will be like!