On the day that Jaime passed away, I sat beside her bed and reminisced with her about happy times. Then, I did what I had done routinely for the past couple days – I read to her verses from the Bible about what would soon be her new home in heaven. For the 6 months Jaime had cancer, we read Psalm 23 quite often. I read it more after news came that I would have few days with my wife. The last time I read Psalm 23 to Jaime, I struggled to get to the end because I realized for her, the wording would soon be different…On December 6, Jaime would “(soon) dwell in the house of the Lord forever.”
Fast forward six months later. I sit 962 miles away from where I read to Jaime about God’s provision, the painful journey, the temporary separation of death, and a reunion that is to come. Psalm 23 is just as precious and living to me today in Pittsburgh as it was on that sunny day in Jaime’s room. Allow me to share Psalm 23…6 months later:
The Lord is STILL my shepherd. Because He was present in the darkest of hours, I knew I could trust Him for the journey ahead.
I followed the Shepherd to a place far away from what was easy or comfortable.
He has led and provided for our needs.
He is daily refreshing and restoring what the enemy hoped would cause me to doubt His existence or attempt to box Him in by an earthly definition of “fairness.”
He is guiding me through the loss & through the darkness so that others look past me and marvel at Him & love Him even more.
He reminds me that I was never guaranteed an easy life and that I have the choice today of accepting what is true or buying into the lie of entitlement.
Now more than ever I believe in the shortness of life and the urgency of the Gospel. There is a moment in time when I will also take my last breath. I am not afraid. I witnessed the beauty of death – The reality that the believer in Christ truly has nothing to fear. The Shepherd, who guided my wife into heaven, is prepared for the moment when his staff will lead me down into the valley.
Until then, He will abundantly provide provision, direction, and wisdom, in the most unbelievable of circumstances.
He will remind me over and over again that I am His child.
He will not allow one evil thing to harm my daughter or me unless He decrees and even then it will only be so that His perfect plans are fulfilled. YES! He is the Author of this story and He has the last word.
And if these promises were not enough, one day, He will walk me into heaven and I will look upon the One whom my sins pierced. Forgiven! Welcome Home James! Rest! Tis so sweet to “look” at Jesus! And then a hug from my favorite saint…my former wife…my best friend…my Jaime. We will sit and reminisce again…this time for eternity.