For years I've wanted to write a book about grief, loss and the brokenness of life. I've journaled and written articles, edited newsletters, spoken on heartache, taught writing workshops, cried, wondered, and pondered. Thanks to Leafwood Publishers, my devotional comes out in January! Getting Out of Bed in the Morning: Reflections of Comfort in Heartache holds forty different entries that each have prayers, scipture verses (many from the Psalms), and tips on reaching out to a God who sustains on every rocky journey.
Here's a little taste of my devotional, starting with the preface.
I set out to write a book about me—my anguish, my loss, my pain, my doubt, my questions. Instead I was pointed to God and wrote about His grace, His love, His faithfulness and His forgiveness. In those are His answers.
We often think it’s all about us—how much we suffer, how much we cry, how tormented we feel. But when we weigh all of our misery against His grace, His grace outweighs it all. God’s compassion is stronger, fiercer than our struggle, His love more constant, radiant and healing than any problem in our den of lions.
If you are early in your grief, you may not understand what I’m talking about. You might still be at odds with God and while you like the title of this book, as you flipped through the pages, that’s all you like. That’s okay. God meets us wherever we are and no amount of disbelief, anger or frustration keeps Him from loving His children. It has taken me fifteen years from the worst heartache of my life to come to this place of comfort, this stream of beauty. And I never thought I’d be here. When my son first died, I told God that we would only communicate in passing, like a neighbor I don’t like when I see her over the fence. I almost wished I had had no past with God—no history, no conversion story—so that I didn’t have to be angry with Him for my loss. God would be distant from now on. I would not expect anything from Him again as I learned to adapt to my heartache.
I am one who had to wrestle. Like Jacob, I did. I groaned and I fought and groaned some more. And through it all, I was surprised. What I thought I’d discarded for good instead became a new song in my mouth. I welcomed a stronger, genuine, more realistic faith—a possession I keep within my broken heart, a gift no moth or thief can steal.
With the pre-launch of Getting Out of Bed in the Morning, I've created a blog called Broken Psalms. This blog will be a plce where we can share heartache and comfort from a Old and New Testament perspective. I hope you'll join me there.