Pristine Grace

Running Parallel!
by Eileen Beckett

Running Parallel!

I was asked the other day how I was doing since I lost my husband and this is the picture that flashed into my mind. It took me by surprise and yet I understood the connection. It was a feeling of being so fragile that if you blew on me I would scatter just as the seeds are doing in this picture. 

I understand and know different things now. Most often we can only truly know life by the experiences we have and those experiences affect us in our person, in who we are. They bring real pain, real suffering, and real sorrow in grief but they also bring real joy and real peace. This has been one of those times for me.  

I understand the suffering of another widow and how the loss of her husband cut deep into her very being, I didn’t know that before. That happened just the other morning at the post office and it really doesn’t take many words to convey to each other the shared loss. It is a loss and longing I could never have imagined until I experienced it and I know now that it was the same for them. I will remember that going forward.

So many want to put grief into a time frame but I’m confident that it is something that God doesn’t want me to sweep under the rug or try and short cut just because it is painful. We are so often tempted to do that aren’t we instead of walking through the hardship. The grief is a companion right now that brings a whole life into perspective and I don’t want to toss it aside as if the whole life wasn’t worth this present suffering, it was the life of one God gave to me and so I’m thankful to look at it intently and to grieve over the loss of it.

Running parallel and alongside is the comfort of the Holy Spirit in faith, for we do walk by faith and not by sight. It reminds me of the unilateral/parallel covenant of Grace running throughout history since before the foundation of the world. All of the promissory covenants have been fully realized in the New Covenant in Christ. The saints of old were never without hope and never without the same Grace of God in Christ that we have today. It is the same with the eyes of faith. If we look at life through those eyes then we have great and abiding hope and comfort running parallel with us as we journey through this vale of tears. 

Tears are such a blessing to us. Job says in 16:20 that his eyes poured out tears unto God. King David in Psalm 56:8 asks God to put his tears into a bottle and asked if they were not in His book? Here is what John Gill says about this verse which captures the very essence of faith and grief running parallel to each other. 

Psalm 56:8 “are they not in thy book?” “verily they are; that is, the tears and afflictions of his people. They are in his book of purposes; they are all appointed by him, their kind and nature, their measure and duration, their quality and quantity; what they shall be, and how long they shall last; and their end and use: and they are in his book of providence, and are all overruled and caused to work for their good; and they are in the book of his remembrance; they are taken notice of and numbered by him, and shall be finished; they shall not exceed their bounds. These tears will be turned into joy, and God will wipe them all away from the eyes of his people.”

This is the very reason that believers grieve differently than the unbeliever. We have hope in the knowledge that the very tears that are shed are appointed to us by our Sovereign God and they have a purpose and are useful to us. He cares abundantly for us amidst the trial that brings the tears, this brings peace and joy to our souls. "Casting all your care upon him; for he careth for you" 1 Peter 5:7

Grace and Peace!