For his anger lasts only a moment,
but his favor lasts a lifetime;
weeping may stay for the night,
but rejoicing comes in the morning.
I'm so excited! My 40th high school reunion is just around the corner! I can't wait to see so many friends from days gone by, to reconnect in a personal way which Facebook simply can't duplicate. To relive memories and celebrate the people we are in the now.
To rejoice in renewed friendships. To cherish each moment of sharing we are given at this gathering. To remember, with love, those classmates no longer with us . . .
We are all busy exchanging information and chatting with one another on our Facebook invite page, everyone pitching in to find "lost" classmates and staying up-to-date with who is planning to attend. In the midst of this, I receive a private, precious message from my dear friend, Mimi: "So excited to see you in just a short time. I remember how sad you were at the 30th. God has certainly repaid what the locusts have eaten and granted you great joy."
Wow . . . I had actually forgotten how sad I was in years gone by! And, had been for several years after my husband, John, passed away unexpectedly in 1997. My joy had already returned when I attended that 30th reunion, but when asked about the past? Well, I guess everything came tumbling out . . .
And, yes, those first years after losing John are anything but easy. I miss him so much. Life seems surreal and empty. I struggle with my faith. I wrestle with God.
Sure, I muddle through each day. Moving forward, step by baby step. Comforted and encouraged by the of my children, my friends, and my family.
But, something is missing. I can't put my finger on it. I still trust in the Lord. I believe, as my father once told me, that God makes no mistakes. (Though, I must confess, I railed against Him more than once for deciding it was John's time to go home.)
Still, I remain in the night of weeping.
Until . . .
One evening at children's choir rehearsal, our pianist, Cathy, rewards the kids' hard work with a rollicking song.
I've got the joy, joy, joy, joy down in my heart . . .
The children are dancing, leaping, clapping, and singing at the top of their lungs. And, in an instant, my soul is flooded with the radiant light of joy! God's joy!
What was lost within me now is found!
The weeping ceases. Instead, I celebrate the gift God gave me in John.
For I know that one bright morning when this life is over, there will be a reunion of our souls in Christ Jesus.
Have you ever attended a high school reunion? Share your experiences in the comments below.
Will you pray with me?
We thank You, Father, for the beautiful souls You have placed in our lives at different times and seasons. May we rest assured that we will one day be reunited with those we love and who loved us. Grant to all who have passed before us lives of perfect service in Your heavenly kingdom. Amen.
Amen Martha O:) Have fun Dear!ReplyDelete
I will, Tomtom! Thanks for coming by today, my friend.Delete
Blessings to you!
It takes time to overcome what you have gone through. The tears were justified then, so is the joy now. Have fun.ReplyDelete
Yes, Janaki, healing does take time, sometimes more than we ever expected. But, joy comes in the morning! :)Delete
Love and blessings, and thanks for visiting!
Beautiful post. I hope to see you there.ReplyDelete
Thanks, whoever this is. :) Hope to see you there, too!Delete
I am out of touch with my high school friends but yes am very much tempted now to get back in touch with them
Thanks so much for dropping by today, Me!Delete
Facebook has made it so easy to reconnect with high school friends, some of whom I thought I'd lost touch with forever. Hope you can get in touch with some of yours. :)
Love and blessings!
Have fun enjoy with friends.ReplyDelete
Thank you, Adriana! I sure will!Delete
Love and blessings, and thanks for stopping by!
I'm happy that you're looking forward to your reunion and I'm sorry for your losses. God doth comfort and carry us doesn't he? Blessings Martha!ReplyDelete
Oh, yes, God always offers us comfort, even when we can't see it or feel it at the time. It's in the looking back when we realize He's never left us.Delete
Thanks so much for coming by, Tameka!
Love and blessings!
Hi dearest friend, I never attended high school reunions nor have bonded with high school classmates(except for three close friends) after our graduation.ReplyDelete
I know how it feels to lose someone I love but to have lived all your life for this one person ~ hmmm, I think it takes a great deal of time to get accustomed to being alone afterwards. You loved him so much.
You have filled me with so much hope to look after the things that God has in store for us.I do believe in reunions afterlife...
I pray with you and for all our loved ones who have gone before us ~ and for all those who are journeying with us at present. I love your prayer and will pray it often.
Love you lots Martha. And have fun in your reunion!
Thanks so much, Melissa, for visiting today, for sharing your beautiful thoughts, and for praying with me.Delete
Yes, it was a very difficult time in my life, but as I told Tameka in the previous comment, God was with me all the time, even though I couldn't "feel" His presence. What a comfort it is to know we never walk through this life alone!
Lots of love and blessings always!
Wow..this was a really touching post...I'm glad the curtain of sorrow has been lifted in your life and so much has changed in the ten years that has passed since your 30th reunion. I hope you have a great time reconnecting with former classmates at your 40th! Beautiful message in this post...thank you. :)ReplyDelete
Thanks so much for coming by, Jessica, and for your kind words.Delete
I think reunions become more important as the years roll on. I am so looking forward to seeing some very dear people in person, not just on Facebook. :)
Glad you liked the message, too!
Love and blessings!
My eyes filled with tears upon reading this. Thank you so much for sharing the loss you experienced and the regained joy that you felt by taking shelter in the Lord's unconditional love. Hope that you have a wonderful reunion. Lots of love xoReplyDelete
Thank you so much for visiting, Vrndavana. Your words mean so much to me here, my friend.Delete
And, God-willing, I'll have a wonderful reunion with some dear classmates.
Love and blessings to you!
You just never know what will trigger another layer of grief and healing. I get sucker punched occasionally that similar way. The uplifting moment of that sweet hymn made me smile along with you! I hope you enjoy your upcoming reunion! We just had our 30th and I wasn't able to attend, so I'll look forward to the next one.ReplyDelete
Much love, sweet girl!
Thanks so much for coming by, Dawn!Delete
We all go through those times of grief and mourning, wondering where God is in it all. When we get to a certain point where we allow joy back in, we realize He was there all the time. We just chose not to see Him carrying us tenderly through the tough times.
Hope you can make your next reunion, my friend!
Love and blessings to you always!
Thank you for writing this very inspiring article Martha and sharing a part of your life I wasn't aware of. Glad you made it through some bad storms and are now in the light:) Looks like God has brought you all the way here towards joy and healing:)ReplyDelete
I have an interesting reunion story in that as an officer for my senior class, I didn't realize we were responsible for reunion planning. So, I not only attended but planned my 10 year reunion. And will probably be expected to plan the 20 year one as well:)
Oh, boy, Vishnu, now that's a tough job! I don't envy my former class officers in what they've had to do. At least, there is Facebook and e-mail to better reconnect with "lost" classmates. I know this has made a world of difference for us.Delete
When I can, I do offer personal stories here. If what I've gone through helps just one person who is grieving or feeling apart from God for whatever reason, I feel I have done His will.
Thanks so much for visiting, my friend, and for your kind and caring words.
Blessings to you!