I am the vine; you are the branches. If a man remains in me and I in him, he will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing. John 15:5
“…apart from me you can do nothing,” reminds me of the first go round of Archie’s cancer.
Archie’s first diagnoses with cancer I was 29, Arch 30 and Taylor was 5. I was mad, no make that ANGRY! How dare God allow this! Didn’t Arch go through enough with his painful past? We had our dream jobs of teaching parents and financial structure forming for our future (the diagnoses toppled all of that as the applications were denied).
“Come on God! We just renewed our vows after ten years of marriage!!!” With my background of broken families, I was just starting to enjoy the idea of my “forever family.” What the heck?
I was so angry I decided God didn’t care about me. How could He? If He did, we wouldn’t be going through this. We quit our dream job, took our house off the market, the financial plans were dust, Arch would go back to third shift (that he helped create) and our lives, with him living under a medical microscope, would begin.
Fear was horrible. I didn’t want Archie to hurt. I didn’t want to be a single mom. Didn’t Taylor deserve her dad? I wanted our family of three, forever. What did we do to deserve this? Why did it have to be him instead of me? “Fine, God, but I just can’t speak with you right now.” So I didn’t.
I shared with you before how it was at that time I discovered I was actually making it, one moment at a time. The waves of grief, of what was later explained as a “living death,” would wash over me constantly. It was then I ascertained that the breath of life was being sucked out of me until I whispered,”Help me, Father, pleeease…help.” And He did. This happened over and over again.
I am now on a very different journey. This time I am skipping the attempt to do this on my own. I found,”…apart from me you can do nothing,” painfully accurate. How about you? What journey are you on? Any “sucking the air out of you” going on?
That brings me to the the first part of the verse, “If a man remains in me and I in him, he will bear much fruit;”.
Taylor and I were discussing our next step in this journey of grief. According to this verse we are suppose to be bearing fruit. Are we? Not so much. Grief is a journey, but not a destination. My heavenly Dad has been allowing us the support of individuals we never knew were standing behind us, silently. It has been humbling as these individuals have stepped out of the shadows and become our light in the darkness, our heavenly Dad with skin on. Heavenly Dad continues to blow me away.
Next step: take a step. I am trying. The last attempt went no were, kind of lost in the shuffle. That’s ok, I don’t know that I would have been ready. Now, the church asked me a few interesting questions, losts of fun to answer, to try to plug me into who I am…now. I am not who I was 10 months ago.
There are now options for me to get more information. Along with the options I have to face my fears: am I ready, now? Do I have the stamina? How do I know what is the right fit for who I am? Could I? Should I?
Isiah 40:31 “but those who hope in the LORD will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint.”
Now I ask the questions, pray, and wait. Your prayers would be appreciated as I am walking in the dark, but by faith.
Until tomorrow: Blessings