Faith Friends

I wish she was here to celebrate.

I would call and sing to her on the phone.  We would meet for lunch, and I would treat because today is a special day.  It is my dear friend, Jeannie’s birthday.   

However, I am not able to do these things.  Sadly, Jeannie passed away three years ago after fighting hard against pancreatic cancer.

It was heartbreaking to lose her so young and so quickly.  Maybe you have recently lost someone in your life.  I know firsthand how hard the special days are especially the first year and even the next years to follow. 

Give yourself lots of grace on those special dates: birthdays, anniversaries, and Holidays. 

Remember grieving looks differently for everyone.  Some people like to be alone and process through writing or journaling.  Others want to talk with someone like a trusted friend or counselor.  Even others will do something in honor or remembrance of their loved one.

So today, even though I cannot celebrate with Jeannie, I want to celebrate and honor Jeannie!

I love this picture of us the night our youngest boys were baptized back in March 2016.

Jeannie was an amazing mom, wife and friend.  She deeply loved Jesus as well as her family; her faith shined brightly in her life. I had the privilege to meet her when our older kids were two years old at MOPS at church.  (Note: now they are 16 years old).  We immediately connected and became faith friends.

A Faith Friend is someone who continues to point you back to your faith in hard times and in good times. 

Jeannie and I were faith friends!   Sadly, we both walked through a heartbreaking miscarriage in between our oldest and youngest. I remember telling her how thankful I was that God had brought her into my life.   She was always an encouragement and support to me especially during the greatest heartbreaks of my life: losing Baby Grace and walking through my divorce.  Little did I know that losing her would be my next greatest heartbreak.

Friends, losing a loved one is so hard.  If you are grieving the loss of a mother, father, friend, child, baby, I want to say, I am so sorry.  I wish I could give you a big hug and remind you that you are not alone in your grief. 

Like a faith friend, let me share with you a bible verse that helped me during my grief.  Psalms 34:18, “The Lord is close to the brokenhearted.” Remember He is close and wants to walk through this with you.   Let me end with this prayer for you.

God, I pray for all the hurting hearts who are grieving the loss of a loved one.  I pray we will feel Your closeness, Your love, and Your comfort particularly on these special days when we are missing our loved ones more than ever. Surround us with faith friends who will encourage us to run to You in our pain and will listen with empathy and love.  God, we don’t always understand why but I pray we will trust You with all of our hearts in the middle of the heartbreak.  In Jesus name, AMEN

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