Today as I attended my grandmom's funeral, I was reminded once again what a blessing it is to have a Godly heritage. While it was a sad day for the family, my grandmom simply - in her words - 'graduated' to something so much better. It was a day that she so looked forward to - not that she looked forward to death, but rather fuller life in the presence of Jesus - that she had really planned the funeral service in advance, wanting specific scriptures read and songs sung that would clearly and boldly proclaim the gospel of Jesus Christ. While I'm so thankful that as Christians death does not leave us hopeless, but rather gives us something to look forward to, it's still hard to adjust to life without loved ones. Today brought so many reminders for me of the tragedy of losing my dad suddenly, two years ago. Again, a tragedy for those of us remaining here - but a triumphal homecoming for him. I imagine there was a joyful reunion though for my dad and my grandmom (who was his mother), and that are awaiting a grand family reunion someday.
One other thing about today that I found very ironic... It was grandmom's birthday today. She was born and buried on the same date.
As a side note, I was pondering over the past weeks how being young, I've always seemed to be in a season of 'adding' - husband, babies, houses, all sorts of new ventures. But lately I've definitely been feeling that I'm entering a different season, one that involves less changes and even more losses than I've ever experienced. In the past few years our family has lost grandparents and my dad. Those are major things to me - things that all my life had been constants. Some of our most cherished friendships have grown distant - for no reason other than 'seasons change'. The season of new babies for me has come to an end. While I'm very sure that I felt we were done having children, it still makes me sad to think of never again feeling the squirming of a new life inside me, or the joyous moment of giving birth. I'm now in a season of training and educating my blessings, and I've got to stop looking for the 'flash in a pan' type energy - the next new and exciting thing - and go for the 'long burn' kind. I need to settle into a sustainable rhythm of life that will provide stability for my family to thrive. For the first time I've gotten a glimpse of why some people experience mid-life crises. Not that I'm saying I'm experiencing one (I'm certainly not old enough for that!), I'm just saying how I could see that if you choose to focus on the wrong things in a season where it doesn't seem like many things are fresh or new, it could definitely get the better of a person. While I don't particularly like the thought of losing other loved ones as we all age, I can purposefully choose to focus on the overwhelming amount of good and new possibilities the future holds.
So much of our life experiences are affected by the attitude with which we choose to approach them. In order for my soul to prosper as I walk this earth, and with the goal of continuing the godly heritage with which I've been blessed, I will resolve to choose to approach life as full of hope, and always keep an eternal perspective in my view. Much as both my grandmothers before me did.