04 January 2014

A month in the valley

I am not sure how many friends read here anymore, but for those who don't know via facebook, one month ago today our daughter, Elora Eilis, who was due to be born in early April, was born after we discovered she had died in utero at 26 weeks.

This month seems as though it has carried an entire life's worth of feeling in it. Elora's death and birth brought into clear focus the fragile beauty of life which is a realization that carries with it the weight of Glory, I think. We went into the Advent and Christmas season with a stark awareness of our desperation for God to arrive in places so previously dark and seemingly uninhabitable that His arrival could only be described in terms of dazzling Light. "God with us" has never seemed more true.  In grief, He has been constant, never turning or foresaking. Like the great lion weeping with a small boy in a new country, He has demonstrated over and over again just how very "with us" He is.

This next week, we head back to the small classical school we attend. There, our children will be taught by loving friends and in turn, I will have the opportunity to meet every day with young minds stuffed full-to-overflowing with big ideas. I am so grateful for them all, but there is a part of me that is mourning the movement of time, the inevitable loss of this place wherein we have walked the valley of the shadow of death hand-in-hand with our Savior. The valley has been dark, but His presence has illumined our very souls.

As we begin to emerge from the deep onto the plain, I know that His light will come from other sources, too.  And while we need that and will rejoice in it, I confess, I will miss how aware I have been of His nearness. Like Mary in the garden, clinging to resurrected Christ, a great part of me doesn't understand how to both let go and still see Him clearly before me, also. I hear Him saying, "I will never leave you nor forsake you" but my goodness, I do so
want to cling...


Mom said...

Your heart makes my heart warmer. May God's presence continue to be as tangible, even in the renewed routine.

suzishepherd said...

April, I love your honesty and willingness to talk about this dark time. And to find something wonderful in it. I'm so glad God has been so present with you.

SonjaLoyd said...

God's Spirit is in all of us,If we let him help,Your a Beautiful person and your spouse.Its a trying time but a time to grab a hold of the ones that are present,because they help us heal with God's presence