I’ve struggled with writing the past few days. I’ve written three different posts and each one felt lacking some critical component, something unknown that banished them to the ‘drafts’ folder and left me staring at a new blank page trying to figure out the words I want to say. Instead of pressuring myself or feeling frustrated, I’m trying to take that for what it is, an opportunity to dig deeper and explore different avenues of thought until I finally uncover the one plaguing me. Tonight however, I’ll let it rest and take a completely different route.
Last night I felt compelled to do a little quiet time right before bed and cracked open my Bible. I’m not quite sure what I read first, but it led me to something else which led me to something else which eventually put me reading a passage in Song of Solomon that I immediately knew was meant for me. Two separate sections of the same chapter, actually, Chapter 2, each of which addressed two major things I needed answers or guidance on right now. I was so wowed by it and took quite a bit of time pouring over it, pondering it, and praying. Today I have still been captivated and for some reason feel the need to share. Maybe someone else needs to hear them too, or maybe it’s just my way of acknowledging it, I don’t know.
The first was Verse 7, the second half which says: Do not arouse or awaken love until it so desires. Wow. Such simple words, but with such an impact. One of the many unpleasant things about being a widow is the loneliness that accompanies you. The absence of the great love and companionship you once had leaves an open space in your heart, one that you can’t help but desire to be filled again. It is all too easy to try to fill this gap with options that will only leave you feeling emptier. Dwelling in the past, overloading yourself with activities, indulging in too much food or wine, or forcing relationships cannot fill you with what you need. I know. I’ve tried them all. And I’ve realized that in the past few months, I’ve been doing the latter of those more than I realized. You can’t force a true connection. You can’t will yourself into a new relationship. You can’t find love. You have to let it find you. And first, you have to give up that empty space to God. Giving yourself over to Him completely and truly trusting that He will fill that emptiness in you is the key. And in time, His time, which is perfect, love will reveal itself to you.
And in the meantime, you have to allow yourself to not feel dependent upon the love of another. Yes, life is so much better with romantic love. Life feels complete with someone you truly love by your side, especially when you’ve experienced that and lost it suddenly. But we widows can be complete alone. We are capable of moving past our pain and into a new season of our lives where happiness is attainable on our own. And the second passage I read revealed this very thing to me, provided me with so much comfort and a sense of excitement.
Verses 10 through 12 of that same chapter say this: “My Beloved spoke and said to me, ‘Arise my darling, my beautiful one, come with me. See! The winter is past; the rains are over and gone. Flowers appear on the earth; the season of singing has come’.” What an awesome thought! It feels like God is speaking right to me through this, I still can’t get over it. For quite some time I’ve felt like I’ve been on the brink of something, a new level of understanding or acceptance or progress. I’ve been inching forward, sometimes naturally and sometimes by my own force, but as much as I tried to feel like I arrived, I knew I wasn’t quite there. This verse reached down somewhere inside me and flipped a light switch, turned on the light I’ve known was nearby. And it revealed a serious truth…
I’ve made it. Two years, four months, and fifteen days ago, I couldn’t comprehend how I would ever survive. Two years ago, I didn’t think I’d make it another week. One year ago, I was amazed at how far I’d come by still struggled to think very far into the future. And just six months ago, the idea of moving forward still felt foreign. But right now, in this moment, I realize that I have made it. I’ve survived. I got through it. And not only did I get through it, but I’ve grown through it. I know that it will never be over. I’ll always be a widow, I’ll always have pain, I’ll always miss him and love him and wish things had been different. But I’ve accepted this life, and this companion called grief that always be by my side, and I’ve stepped over the line.
The downpour is gone, although the showers will come and pass for the rest of time. Flowers have sprouted where barren earth once was, and they will bloom when the perfect season arrives. Hopeful song has filled the spaces that once were quiet and solemn. I will arise and feel the warmth now that the winter has passed. And I am so grateful for the opportunity to do so. I may have suffered through a horrible time in hell, but I was blessed with heaven before and I know I will be again. <3