Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change

I'm feeling human these days, not quite great, but not so bad. I don't think this prescription will be my final option, but we shall see.
So a few weeks ago I went on the women's retreat. It was good, bad and interesting. God definitely wanted me there, but it was very difficult for me. I had to deal with a lot of emotional junk that I have been carrying around for a long time, including my issues with abandonment and feeling invisible. I'm new to this church, so I only knew a few people, which made it difficult for me. But in the end, I'm so glad I went, and I made some new friends along the way.
The speaker for the weekend taught on the story of Isaac and Rebekah. The teaching was good, and she also gave her testimony. Her husband had a heart attack eight years ago, and suffered brain damage because of it. He is now like a seven year old child, and she is his caregiver. What strength this woman must daily require from God to get through that.
On Saturday evening I was chatting with one of the ladies that I know from my Bible study. We got on the subject of my grandmother, and I shared about my struggle with being angry at God about her. The unfairness of being widowed so young, raising her children alone, and then being widowed again when she finally got remarried, and ending up alone in a nursing home with Alzheimer’s Disease…. It’s just more than I can stand, and I cry about her fairly often. (though some of that is my depression I’m sure) My friend had some good perspective and was really a comfort to me about it. She pointed out that at least my Gram had those 3 years with my step-grandfather, and that it could have been worse; he could have ended up like the speaker’s husband who is endlessly trapped in the mind of a child. I knew she had a good point.

At the last session on Sunday morning the speaker was talking about how she had been talking to a group of women about God’s will, and how we must be willing to give Him everything. She said she didn’t really know what that was though. The next day, standing by her husband’s hospital bed, she knew: this was her everything. I cried when she said that, and it was like a light bulb went off. If Gram had known where her life would take her, if God had come to her at the beginning and said, “Marcia, will you do this for Me? Will you give me everything?”….. she would have said yes. My Gram loves Jesus, and she would have said yes. This realization gave me a peace after all these years of being angry at God for letting her get sick. My anger at the unfairness began to melt, and is pretty nearly gone. I have acceptance and peace now. I know I will have to work at keeping that, because surely the devil won’t want me to stay that way. But for now, I am at peace about it.


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