I have been told that I have the tenacity of a bulldog that I am stubborn, determined, focused, and hard headed. By the way, these adjectives are listed for the English Bulldog breed characteristics. I admit that I am all of these.
I had an employer who said to me, “Elkins, I bet if you lost both of your legs in the middle of a forest, you would try to crawl out. Wouldn’t you?” I said, “Yes, sir. I would certainly try too.” I don’t give up on things easily.
I am motivated by projects or causes. I tend to focus on a project and complete it to the best of my ability. I write all of this to give you an insight as to how I approach projects or problems. I gather all the known information and make plans and take actions accordingly. But now, I face a problem that I can’t gather “all” known information, because I have to live it, day by day for a time that is unknown to me and it is hard for me to handle. I believe its called “walking by faith.”
The old saying of “if you find yourself in a hole and it’s getting bigger, stop digging!” came to my mind after I had a long talk with my sister, last night. She said something that told me that I had to stop digging, I can’t do anything about it, except to wait it out, like a hurricane that comes to shore.
We were talking about, in time, that it has only been 12 weeks since Terrie died and in context of the grief process, I’m only a quarter (if you use one year) or an eighth (if you use two years) into the process. Then she said, “I know you are only wanting things to be ‘over’. Too stop hurting, but you have to give yourself some time.” She was right, but the bulldog in me doesn’t like that, and I want to fight the hurt and crawl out of the forest and just……find happiness again.
I feel like I’m in a school that I don’t know what the class schedule is or even what the subject is. I’m the only one in the class and I’m unsteady and unsure. I don’t know if I will pass the course. My navigational points have been taken or moved and I’m upside down.
I do know my instructor. He is the best there is and He knows me. He is a friend of mine. He knows when to push me and when to give me rest. He know when to give me instruction and when to test my comprehension.
I’m reminded of the biblical story of Mary and Martha. Jesus came to their home for supper.
38 Now as they were traveling along, He entered a village; and a woman named Martha welcomed Him into her home. 39 She had a sister called Mary, who was seated at the Lord’s feet, listening to His word. 40 But Martha was distracted with all her preparations; and she came up to Him and said, “Lord, do You not care that my sister has left me to do all the serving alone? Then tell her to help me.” 41 But the Lord answered and said to her, “Martha, Martha, you are worried and bothered about so many things; 42 but only one thing is necessary, for Mary has chosen the good part, which shall not be taken away from her.” Luke 10:38-42 NASB
I played the role of Martha in this story. I find myself trying to prepare for the future to the point I get distracted from what my subject should be, that Jesus is in the house! I’m getting personal time with the Lord on my ‘highway of grief’ and I’m not focused on who is with me. I’m focused on who is not with me.
When we lived in Marlow, OK, I was in the eighth grade. My sister kicked me and hurt me. I decided she must die for kicking me. My older brother somehow got me flat on the ground with his knees pinning my shoulders to the dirt to where I could not move at all. He looked at me and said, “Don’t”. I said, “but she hurt me!!” He looked intently into my eyes and said, “You are not going to hurt my little sister.” He wasn’t angry, but he was in control. He held me there until I calmed down. I think the Lord has me pinned to the ground and is saying, “You are not going to hurt yourself or anyone else. You will get through this!” He isn’t angry, but He is in control.
Thank you Lord for being with me and not letting me hurt myself by running through the dark house with no lights on. Keep reminding to light the candle and walk slowing toward the place you want me to be, in the time you want me to take. Amen.