There was time to say goodbye.

photo credit: Debris2008 via photopin cc
photo credit: Debris2008 via photopin cc

Have you ever had a season of emotional turmoil?  Where you knew that emotions were building up on the inside, and all that you wanted to do was to share it, but you were never really able to get to the point of the ‘spilling over’ of your thoughts, your emotions, your world as it stands right now? I

It’s like it gets stuck somewhere deep down, a buried treasure covered over by layers and layers, just waiting for the digging, waiting for the discoverers. It is awaiting the time that all the golden coins, precious stones and buried wealth come spilling out, to enrich someone’s life, apart from your own.

As I write this, the news of the passing of Nelson Mandela has hit, and we have seen a deluge of people come together at a South African soccer stadium to mark this historical milestone. The loss of so great a man is impacting. An event that will leave its mark.  A legacy of mammoth proportions.  But the life that was lived will remain in the hearts of his family forever. Their hearts will be touched because they have loved a great man, a father, grandfather, a friend.

His faith and forgiveness through a Joseph type of existence is an example to our world. He had a will to live and do good through the most horrific of circumstances, a heart that could forgive.

He lead through the scars, most of which the masses will never know of, and yet, his family heard his soul.

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Let me tell you today about a legacy that was left by someone whose funeral was not attended by the ‘greats’ of this world, but by a family who stood united, looking towards another sunrise with hope and faith. They did this because of the constant prayer and focus of one man, who cared for them.

A month ago today I lost this dear friend, my one and only sibling, my brother.

I have not been able to write here or anywhere at all since then, such has been my anguished state of heart. You see, in writing one can bear one’s soul and set free the inner most thoughts that are hyper sensitive and vulnerable, yet able to release another with their testimony.

Have you ever had a season like that?  You want to share, but you’re aching inside so much that you can’t? 

There are times when we’re just not able to allow the plundering of our souls.  It hurts. But then a time comes when we understand that the very act of opening up will bring a richness to us all. It’s an understanding that displaces the inward isolation that can come through storms in our lives. And this sharing then brings healing.  It can open the doors so that others can relate and be revived themselves.

And the healing is what we are all aiming for, because it brings the promise of newness.  And right there, I think I’ve learned something again (does it ever stop?):

No matter what I face in life, Jesus is there to bear my burden as I in turn bare my heart.

And as my heart opens, creaking all the way with the rust and dryness that the storms and the grief can build, He gently coaxes my understanding to a place of comfortable acceptance. And I feel new.

Oh, there are certainly the ‘moments,’ unpredictable, piercing my day like a bolt of lightning out of the blue southern sky. But around me are the faithful ones, the acts of kindness, the empathy of those who understand the treasure hunt that is life. They bring to me the growth and freshness of friendship, love and a new future. It’s held out in their hands like a silver platter, my choice being whether I will take it.

Why is it so hard at these times to reveal? To share? To be transparent?

It was a beautiful home-going that day, just four short weeks ago.  There was the reconciliation of he and his only true love after over twenty years. There was the spending of precious time with those he loved the most. There was time to say goodbye.

Children. Family. Love. Acceptance. Eternity.

I’ve been reading the book of Hebrews ever since, and it stirs my soul about faith. How many of those great heroes of the faith never even  saw what they were believing for, and yet, they kept believing? It is inspiring me to live and walk in truth.

So, I guess this piece today is about never giving up. Even if you don’t see your rainbow in the sky.  Even if you can’t tell which way is up for a season. Even if you are finding it hard to communicate, to share, or to even get in touch with your soul.

Keep believing.

Because all your doubting will never, ever change the truth: He loves, He lives, He longs for you.  Leave regret behind.

This quote from C S Lewis was on the card we printed for my brother’s farewell, “Has this world been so kind to you that you should leave with regret? There are far, far, better things ahead than any we leave behind”. (C S Lewis)

No truer word has touched my own soul. Farewell Mandiba. Your family will never forget.

Farewell my brother. Your family remember, always.

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Author: admin

Valery has been in ministry in the church for over 28 years, alongside her husband Michael. Writing is a new and more recent passion that is growing in its focus and the priority in her life! Valery has been privileged to minister across Australia, as well as in the USA, Europe and in Asia. She is a sought after speaker for conferences and women’s ministry events. Whether speaking to a small group of women living in Urban poverty or to large church based groups, Valery is passionate about every person experiencing life transformation through Christ and the total freedom and wholeness that comes with a personal relationship with God. Valery’s other great passion is her family. Together with husband Michael they have 3 fabulous adult children Leah, Ryan and Elyse.

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