“This is the day which the LORD hath made; we will rejoice and be glad in it.” – Psalm 118:24
Today, I find that particularly hard. March 3rd, I really want to hate March 3rd. Two years ago today we lost Mom. Two years is a long time, just not long enough… It still hurts. Life does continue on, and honestly, most days are OK now. But I still miss her.
I woke up today and the first thought that crossed my mind was, “It’s March 3rd.” I spent a few miserable minutes reflecting on all of the reasons why I’d like to just skip today altogether. Then I thought of the verse from Psalm at the beginning of my post. I’d been prepared to be miserable, not convicted.
“Brothers and sisters, we do not want you to be uninformed about those who sleep in death, so that you do not grieve like the rest of mankind, who have no hope.” – I Thessalonians 4:13 NIV
Tempting as it is for me to spend the day wallowing in despair and self-pity, I can’t. That’s how those without hope grieve. This is not to say that it’s wrong for me to still miss her terribly! Of course I do. Today in particular will bring a few tears, I’m sure. But not despair. Not the paralyzing grief of the hopeless.
“Blessed be God, even the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies, and the God of all comfort; Who comforteth us in all our tribulation, that we may be able to comfort them which are in any trouble, by the comfort wherewith we ourselves are comforted of God. For as the sufferings of Christ abound in us, so our consolation also aboundeth by Christ.” – II Corinthians 1:3-5
The Father of mercies, the God of all comfort, has promised to comfort me. As much as I want to be miserable and feel sorry for myself, I have no excuse to. According to the Scriptures, my consolation aboundeth by Christ! If I truly have faith, how can these assurances not spark some hope within me?
“And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me.” – II Corinthians 12:9
I’m fond of quoting that verse, but do I really live like I believe it? I’m ashamed to say that I do not. I do not always behave as if God’s grace is enough for me.
So where does this leave me today? Today will still be a hard day. It’s a particular reminder of how much I miss Mom. There’s nothing wrong with missing those we love. But I’m also learning that I must guard against self-pity. It’s an easy sin for me to fall into, unfortunately. In the end, I have hope. And that Hope is greater than despair.
“Therefore being justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ: By whom also we have access by faith into this grace wherein we stand, and rejoice in hope of the glory of God. And not only so, but we glory in tribulations also: knowing that tribulation worketh patience; And patience, experience; and experience, hope: And hope maketh not ashamed; because the love of God is shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Ghost which is given unto us.” – Romans 5:1-5