Holding onto Hope - Life is Changed, It is Not Ended
“Life is changed, but it is not ended.” I have held onto these words for several days now. They were spoken during a Mass that was held at the church cemetery on All Souls Day.
As Mass was ending, I looked up at the sky from my grandmother’s grave, I realized that while she is no longer with us and our lives have changed the stars still shine and the moon still comes out at night. And, although it would seem like the world would look dimmer, it in fact shines brighter.
This year has been hard on most of us. In our family our hearts were broken as we said good-bye to my father-in-law and my grandmother, yet we are at peace when we remember that they also gained their angel wings. With excitement and eager anticipation we welcomed new little ones into our family and watched so many conquer disease and illness. We spent most of the year visiting grandpa and grandma through a pane of glass, but were blessed with being able to be together as a family to send our grandma to her heavenly home. We walked alongside my father-in-law as he battled brain and lung cancer and we held onto so much love for one another.
Life has changed, but it has not ended. Not by a long shot! Our God promises us life for an eternity! What joy, what hope, what excitement that brings!
Paul reminds us in Ephesians 4 that there is “one Lord, one faith, one baptism, one God and Father of all, who is above all and through all and in all.” He further reminds us that God “gave gifts to his people… to equip the saints for the work of ministry, for building up the body of Christ.”
God calls us to follow him and Paul further reminds us that we must “speak the truth in love…[and] promote the body’s growth in building itself up in love.”
Paul reminds us that God has called us to give up our former ways of life and give thanks as we live “as children of light.” As I write I reflect on the incredible fire my brother-in-law built for our family shortly after my father-in-law passed away. It was a weekend spent together without an agenda, just one of hope and healing. And, such incredible love and light.
And, as I reflect on the fire, I consider the words of our Lord in Ephesians 5 “be subject to one another out of reverence for Christ.” As I continue on the journey, I am reminded that “husbands, [should] love their wives, just as Christ loved the church...so that she may be holy and without blemish” and I am further reminded that a “wife should respect her husband.” This is the way to peace in the household and in life.
Life is changed, it will continue to change, but it is not ended, it does not end. It continues far beyond what we can see or even imagine. It is a place of light and love, of joy and excitement, a place where our loved ones wait with eager anticipation to welcome us to our new home. In the meantime, here just beneath the stars let’s continue to hold onto hope...hold onto Phillipians and Ephesians...and allow it to build us up to be a light heart, mind, body, and soul or at least to help us build a warm welcoming fire of healing.
Ya’ll have a beautiful day!
All My Love,
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