Monday, August 31, 2009

In Love Everyone Wins

Talking to my friend this morning about love - "two times failed" he said about former relationships. It made me reflect - how often we determine the value of love or relationship by how long it lasted or the current status.

You see, in reality, if you opened your heart twice that says you believed and were willing to be vulnerable twice. You risked big twice. That says a lot.

Even just doing the right thing in relationships when it means being honest, kind and good - that is success.

Often Hollywood paints a picture of love that loses its real beauty. The Bible says it best:
1 Corinthians 13:4 "Love is patient and kind. Love is not jealous or boastful or proud or rude. Love does not demand its own way. Love is not irritable, and it keeps no record of when it has been wronged. It is never glad about injustice but rejoices whenever the truth wins out. Love never gives up, never loses faith, is always hopeful, and endures through every circumstance."

In love everyone wins. Because when you truly love you want OTHER people to win. You pray they do and just by praying that . . . and by keeping your heart right . . . you win too.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Destiny or Both?

A sweet friend of mine reminded me of the opening scene to Forrest Gump. A white feather floating along in the wind, spinning, twirling and finally landing at Forrest's feet. My friend told me, "Some of life is destiny, some is luck. And sometimes things happen that change the course completely and you don't even see it coming. "

Is it destiny where we land? I've thought that to myself so many times over the last two years. Cancer treatments and finally Paul's passing . . . was it his destiny to die of cancer? And if it was, what is my destiny now without him? It has been a prayer on my heart offered so many times. "God, help me understand how much is my destiny, my path determined by you, and how much is my choice. How much is my part?"

My life feels very much like a river now - moving, changing, finding a new path. It's scary and exciting to see a life open up with new feelings, new hopes and new dreams.

And as I sat by myself recently - a tiny white feather landed next to me. God is good. Some of life is destiny, some is luck. And sometimes wonderful things happen that change the course completely . . . and you don't even see it coming.

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Can't Go Back - Only Forward

Another day over. It's dark outside and the children are getting to bed. I look at tomorrow's schedule.

The reality sounds so trite - can't ever go back - only forward.

I look back at images that are so familiar. But they are only paper images now. I look at my planner and the calendar pages dictate the days, months and years ahead. I've had quite the education watching Paul go through cancer treatments.

Paul was gifted at choosing joy. He chose laughter when he certainly could have complained. He chose adventure when it certainly wasn't convenient or comfortable. He chose love, friends, kids, and singing when he could have isolated and became cynical.

What a great example to myself and our children - there is a choice. We all get to decide our future mindset and how we will face new circumstances. Can't go back - only forward. Forward thinking joy, forward planning joy, forward envisioning joy.

The future seems a whole lot better deciding that's my plan : )

Choose joy.

Monday, August 3, 2009

Coming Up For Air

So much has changed in my life in the past two weeks. I hardly recognize my life anymore. A huge darkness engulfs me many times a day and the tears seemed endless. Small things still must be addressed - Paul's clothes folded from the laundry, his toothbrush, his phone . . . reminders that he will not be coming back. It is heartwrenching.

Planned months ago, a trip had been scheduled for me to go back to North Carolina for a book conference. When the date came I could think of a million reasons to stay home - who wants to go out into the world after the passing of a spouse? Then again - who wants to be home in the silence of the loss of a spouse? Here or there - I felt neither would be better however, doors to the future might open through a conference like that.

Charlotte North Carolina brought so many things into my life. Amazing, special people. New strength. New vision. New courage. New possibilities. It was truly like coming up for air. In fact, Paul had very much wanted me to go on that trip - and in so many ways it was like breathing again.

Sometimes its hard to see how deep you're sinking until you come up to the top gasping. Then you realize you've been holding your breath for an awfully long time.

Life is about the breathing and the living. Thank you Paul for teaching me that.