Sunday, February 16, 2014

Gone From Here, But Still Near

Valentine's Day would have been our 10-year wedding anniversary. The day I married the love of my life was a sunny Saturday with lots of snow on the ground, much like today (okay, not this much snow!). It will always be my favorite Valentine's Day for obvious reasons. But I had a very good one this year, too.

As a grieving person will tell you, it's important to prepare for these big days. Each day for the past several weeks, I have been thinking a lot about Valentine's Day and how I could prepare to celebrate in a way that didn't "surprise me" too much.

Though I received other sweet offers and many calls of encouragement, I made some low-key plans with a dear friend who lost her soulmate the year before. We spent the day doing some of the adventurous outdoor things Ted and Jeff would have done. We visited the frozen beach in Algoma, enjoyed the full moon guiding us home, and tried to imagine all that our men would be doing in the great world beyond this life.

We truly felt God's unfailing love envelop us in the way the day unfolded. 

How much more I have been learning to abide and marvel at the way God provides the sweetest details in the most remarkable ways. His love is so wonderful and there is joy in life again. 

Ted and I have a long distance relationship now, but he is present and I can live in his love, much like I've experienced living in God's love. I tried to imagine Ted's words encouraging me:

My Love,
You know I am near you on this day of all days, my bride, my forever love.

You're doing a great job and I am so proud of you. I knew you were smart and capable. I knew you could do it.

It wouldn't have been my choice to leave you. Why, I wanted to bring you along with me -- like on all our greatest adventures! Oh, I wish you could see and experience what I am seeing and experiencing now.

Enchanting...Glorious...Magnificent...Ethereal...Transcendent... No, all that and more! There are no words adequate to describe the infinite design, wisdom and beauty of the galaxies and the heavens!

You would not believe what God has in store for those who love Him. Imagine all the most beautiful places we've seen together and roll them into one...and, Babe, you ain't seen nothing yet.

You were such a blessing to me and I am so pleased to see all that you are now taking on. You are growing so much. I know there are still some "advanced" climbs necessary -- some rocky terrain -- but don't be discouraged. Our Lord is with you and I'm with you, and it's well worth the trip!

I love you so much and I'll be waiting for you so we can spend eternity together in the PRESENCE OF OUR GREAT GOD. Oh, what a glorious day that will be!

Til then...
My deepest love,

Heavenly Father, thank you for your unfailing love and your generous gifts lavished on me. Thank you for the wonderful man you gave me. You make it possible for me to feel "complete," even with such a huge part of my life gone from here. Thank you for the promise of eternity.