I woke up this morning next to a sleeping curly-haired boy. As I lay there listening to him breathe he thrashed around a bit, and his elbow landed on my arm. It was easy to close my eyes and try to pretend Jenna was sleeping next to me again, in another one of those silly attempts to plug the Jenna-shaped hole in my soul for just a brief moment and feel normal again. It didn’t work, like I knew it wouldn’t. Trying to pretend is futile because I know that is what it is…an illusion.
I always knew it would get hard around this time. It has. I am writing this entry to encourage myself, because for much of today I have been feeling the opposite. Missing Jenna is gnawing a hole in my gut. I have cried more tears today than most.
The weirdest thing is that sometimes I catch my spirit singing, and rejoicing as if I am about to break forth into a dance of joy. I have learned in bible school that I am made up of soul, body and spirit, and while my soul and body protests Jenna’s death with everything in it, my spirit is at peace. Deep down I know all these things: Jenna is gloriously happy where she is now and she is not missing a thing. Jesus has me in the palm of his hand and one day I will see his glory through this with my own two eyes. I know that one of Gods’ titles is Redeemer and he always lives up to his name.
I was laying in bed just recently calling to mind all the instances I could think of in the bible that deals with God’s redemption/restoration. I thought about the fact that he is a Father – and any good father is characterised by his giving heart. Fathers work impossible hours, just so that all the benefit could go to their families. They seek the best for their children and would pour out everything they have to protect, nurture and guide their families. Fathers are givers and my Father God is no exception. “For God so loved the world that he gave…”
I know my Father God has a generous heart. So…why did he take Jenna away from me? I don’t know the answer to that question but I know him enough to trust that (like my friend Phyllis said) he didn’t take her to rob me, but to give me something.
Every single bible character that I thought of who had lost something dear had a far greater recompense at the end. David lost his first baby by Bathsheba, but the second one became a Solomon! Joseph lost many years being a slave and a prisoner. But he gained back all he had lost, including his family, and became a ruler and a deliverer of his people. Everything Job had lost was restored in a much greater measure. Adam and Eve got Seth to replace Abel. Ruth found her Boaz, Hannah her Samuel, and Mephibosheth his undeserved grace at the king’s table.
Even Jesus, who was denied an earthly wife will have a bride in heaven!
My God restores. How, when, where I do not know. I may have to wait until I get to heaven to see it, as he wipes away every tear from my eyes. But I believe this much: he will be generous. What I gain will go beyond what I have lost , because that is who my God is.
I absolutely can’t wait to see Jenna again and every day that passes is a day closer to that wonderful moment. (Bring it on, Jesus!) At the same time I am looking forward to seeing what else my Father God is hiding in his bosom for me.
Hosea 6:1 Come, and let us return unto the LORD: for he hath torn, and he will heal us; he hath smitten, and he will bind us up. After two days will he revive us: in the third day he will raise us up, and we shall live in his sight.