I don't even remember what our original conversation was about, but at some point, Glen turned to me and said those bone-chilling words,
"If something happens to me. . ."
He went on to detail some very practical things that he thought were important for me to know and to do if that "something" should occur. We had a good conversation about the details, but all the while, deep inside of me, was a person screaming out, "Please don't leave me alone!"
All of us have had and faced at some point that temptation to fear being abandoned by someone. We may fear a spouse dying, or something terrible happening to a child. As our parents age, we may fear the day when they are no longer with us. It can be a gripping, disabling fear if we let the thoughts take root in our heart and mind and grow into a mighty tree.
As soon as those little roots began sprouting in my own heart, I thought back to the times of loss I have already been through in my life. I remember the day my father died -- something I had dreaded since the day his brother died unexpectedly.
I remember only a few months later when my mother died. I only realized recently that when I laid across her bed and wept violently, I was mourning not one, but both parents.
I remember a day over twenty years ago when Glen and I were told that there was to be no baby after all. With tear stained cheeks found solace in each other and our grief shared was more easily carried.
I even remember when a dearly loved beagle had an accidental death. I spent that night at the side of my daughter's bed, in case she should wake up during the night missing her usual sleeping companion.
Grief is one of our deepest emotions. It hurts us and racks our very soul. But it is also the opportunity through which we can know the most sublime comfort from our Lord. In every moment of grief I have known, I have also known His love, His peace, His comfort, and yes, His joy. I have been surrounded by and enveloped in a sense of Him that was unmistakable. The pain was not removed, but He was sufficient in the pain. The tears did not cease to flow, but He was comfort through the tears.
I have great confidence that whatever may be in the path before me, that He will continue to be sufficient for every moment. He will be all in all that I need Him to be. There is nothing too great for Him and there is nothing that can separate me from His love. I am safe in Him.
"Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword? As it is written, For thy sake we are killed all the day long; we are accounted as sheep for the slaughter. Nay, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him that loved us. For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord." Romans 8:35-39