Lenten Journey: Loss and Grief as Expressions of Love and Care

Saturday, February 16, 2013

Dearest Family and Friends,

As we all know, change is inevitable and a normal part of life. In 2010, changes in my life led me to begin writing weekly scriptural meditations and, in 2011, to create my website Seekinggodspresence.com (Seeking God’s Presence Healing the Wounded Heart.) Many of you have been devoted to reading my meditations and I am very grateful. I hope you will continue as the meditations take on a new flavor during Lent: Loss and Grief as Expressions of Love and Care.

After significant prompting from many of you, I applied, was accepted and am currently participating in Clinical Pastoral Education (CPE) as a Chaplain Internship. Serving as a Hospital Chaplain has made me acutely aware of the experiences of LOSS and GRIEF as expressions of the LOVE and CARE we have for each other.

As we enter our 2013 Lenten Journey, my mediation writings will be changing format as I begin reflecting on the theme of Loss and Grief as Expressions of Love and Care. I hope you will continue to read, reflect and mediate on my writings as I share my personal stories of loss, grief and the grace of hope and love as they flowed forth from the depths of my suffering and the tears of my sorrow. Because we are created with the insatiable need to be loved, to belong, be accepted and to offer our Self as love, we experience losses and grieve deeply.  

My first meditation, emailed to you on Sunday, February 17, 2013, Loss and Grief as Expressions of Love and Care: LOSS OF PRIVACY will be on the experience of loss and grief as I surrender my deeply held desire for privacy to tell my story as an expression of my love. Scary? Oh Yes! Absolutely!

First and foremost, I ask that you pray that I will have the courage to open my heart, be vulnerable, and share my Self through personal stories of loss and grief as expressions of my love and care for you so that we may all seek God’s presence and heal our wounded hearts.   

Secondly, I ask that you hold me in prayer as I serve the hospital community and develop the skill, competency and unique pastoral presence of a hospital chaplain. It is my hope to complete 4 units of CPE over the next year.

I am deeply grateful to my family and friends, most especially those who held my hand, listened patiently without judgment, loved me unconditionally and bore the burden of sorrow with me. Furthermore, I experienced God, not as the One to remove suffering, but as the presence of LOVE through others and the beauty of creation to faithfully journey with me through the darkness of suffering, towards the light of hope and into the fullness of Love again. “My soul shall be healed.”



Blessings of Wisdom

With all your soul draw close to her (wisdom), with all your strength keep her ways. Search her out, discover her; seek her and you will find her. Then when you find her, do not let her go; and she will become your joy.
—Sirach 6:27-29

We are in a culture of information overload. Knowledge is power. The internet provides us with a seemingly unlimited resource for information, often offered without credibility or accountability. We can easily be overwhelmed and mislead by corrupted information. How do we decide what or who to believe? The Book of Sirach invites us to seek wisdom and live accordingly. Take whatever information or knowledge that you are discerning and present it to Jesus in prayer. Allow the teachings of the Gospel and our faith to permeate the info in the silence of our prayer. Be still. Wait. Wisdom will come. Opening our hearts and minds to the truth and God’s pure love so that we may find the joy and peace that wisdom promises. With wisdom, we will know who and what to believe and how to live accordingly.

Photo by Sarah Heacox

Dear Jesus, guide me through your wisdom that I may be your living, joyful presence in the world. Amen