On a Monday, two years ago this week, my beloved friend lost her brief battle with cancer.
Life went on. The sun rose the next morning, and I had a dental appointment.
So I went to the dentist.
Waiting to be called, I sat on the uncomfortable chair. I looked around and realized that life seemed normal here, but nothing was normal for me. I couldn’t be a part of this seeming normalcy. Didn’t want to be. My friend was gone.
Then the tears came.
And I didn’t want to be at the dentist, sitting in that chair and thinking of her. I needed to stop thinking and feeling because it hurt too much, right in my chest. Right in that place where the phrase “heartache” must’ve originated…
So, with great effort, I got up, went to the desk, and re-scheduled my appointment.
Then I went out and bought WAY too many flowers. Purple, white, red, yellow. I spent the entire day planting, making up mixed pots of color, tending my vegetable plants as well. I fed, watered, added soil where it was needed…oh, what a relief to be among them…..
It was a good choice, spending the day with my flowers. They’re glorious ~ brilliant, uplifting, comforting. They refresh the soul, they brighten the landscape. They’re a blessed reminder of our Heavenly Father’s love.
My friend was several years younger than I. And like my flowers, she was captivating. She was spunky, bright, witty, beautiful. She was a gifted artist. She made her own beads, she set jewels in silver and gold. She was a jewel!
She’d studied under one of the most famous potters in the world. She even made decorative tiles for her new home. I saw them on the last day of her life, when I stood by her bedside…
She loved life and relished every moment. And she was so witty! Some of the longest laughing fits I’ve ever known were the result of her zany sense of humor! I hid tears of laughter while sitting beside her in more than one interminable business meeting. She simply made the world a brighter place!
About three weeks before that day she was told that she had metastatic cancer. And when they tried to give her chemo, she was too ill. And so, on a Monday, her body succumbed to the monstrous evil known as cancer. I was there with her an hour before her death, and my heart, body, and mind were overwhelmed with sadness at her suffering and the weight of her family’s grief.
The greatest blessing for me that day was to know she was with Christ. I drove back across Houston. Instead of coming home I spent a few minutes with two dear saints, the Bowers ~ precious friends who love the Lord and who were so comforting when I needed them.
Thankfully she’s with our Lord now; I know she was a believer. I praise God for the hope that we have as Christians! Our expectation from God is that when we leave this earth we’ll be with Him for eternity. And His Word has NEVER failed.
“Do not let your hearts be troubled. Trust in God, trust also in Me. In my Father’s house are many rooms; if it were not so I would have told you. I am going there to prepare a place for you.” John 14:1-2
We can rest in the certainty that we are going to be with Him after we leave this earth!
But as for me, today I praise God for my dear friends, and for those flowers! He knew that I needed solace, and He provided for my needs as only He can.
Are you hurting today? Is there a deep sadness, a great sorrow or pain that you are bearing? Remember that if you are a child of God, He has a perfect plan for your life:
And millions would be freed of this horrific scourge.
My prayer is that there will soon be a cure for cancer.
It’s time. It’s necessary. It’s gotta happen!
In 2012 nearly 700,000 people ~ 1500 a day ~ died from cancer. It is the second most common cause of death in America.
In the meantime, we’ll continue to love and support those who are valiantly battling. We’ll donate to all those organizations researching and treating cancer. We’ll pray faithfully for God to guide the physicians and to act as the Great Physician on behalf of those who are attacked by this evil enemy.
And I’ll always miss my friend, who’s most likely bringing a smile to the Lord’s face right now. Someday we’ll laugh again together.
Dear God, thank you for friends!
Please bless all those left behind who grieve today.
Please help me to remember that there is no darkness
that Your Light cannot penetrate,
Nor any sadness that You cannot overcome.
You are so much like your friend….what a treasure and blessing you are to me. Thanks for this insight into your life with your friend!
And you are so dear to me for reading this and for sharing your thoughts. I’m honored that you would say this. Love you so much and can’t wait to see you!!!!
Ahh Becky- I’m so glad you spent the day with Jesus & your flowers. So many people just numb themselves & push themselves forward- not experiencing grief and then healing. Such a beautiful post- taking us through the unfairness of cancer to the amazing reminder that this is death is not the end- and for those who love God- it’s the beginning of our uberlife with Jesus! love ya- and sending you hugs
Becky – John 14:1-2 was brought into a new light for me. Don’t know why it hasn’t touched me before like this. To imagine the Lord preparing a room for us because he knows it’s time for us to come home. Such a comforting thought when we see our loved ones suffer here on earth. You are also such a strong person to allow yourself to grieve. Cindy is right when she said so many just numb themselves and dont experience the pain associated with the loss of a loved one. I dont think you can truly move forward until you do. What a blessing your blog is to me. Hugs to you my friend.
Becky, This was a lovely tribute to your friend. It is a blessing to all who will read it. The Scriptures are uplifting and the photos are gorgeous.
Thank you, my saintly friend. You’re my inspiration in so many ways, and I praise the Lord for your friendship. xox
Wow you are such a beautiful person, inside and out that was amazing gift for not only to your friend but too others who are having a hard time these days. It brought a huge smile to my heart, I know your friend loved this as well.
Big Hugs Pamela
Thank you, Pamela, for reading this post. You’re so kind! She was a very special friend, and we loved each other so. I miss seeing you on Monday nights in class! Love always, Becky
I would like to say how sorry I am for your loss. I know you are going to miss your friend because the words you used to describe her was as if you were speaking of yourself. I am glad you have found comfort in the Lord. You’re a wonderful person Becky and glad to call you my friend.
God bless you,
p.s. I hate cancer too!
THANK you, Elizabeth, for your comments! You’re so kind and generous. I love y’all and miss seeing you in class! Hugs, Becky
I am so sorry for the loss of your friend. Your writings are so uplifting…I know the hand of God is guiding each word you write. My only regret is that we live so very far from one another…I would love to be able to “talk” over a cup of coffee! Love you…
Janet, thank you for your comment.:) I’m really looking forward to your July visit here! We’ll have some time to visit!