When life hands you lemons, make lemonade… I keep thinking about that phrase. Sometimes I feel like if you don't "make lemonade" out of every situation you face, that somehow you're doing something wrong; or at least others might think that of me. I know deep down that's not true, but there is some truth in that cliche; it's a helpful reminder to not sit alone, isolating myself from everything that is good in my life, and just become an unhealthy mess of sadness. I've been racking my brain these last several weeks trying to figure out what our "lemonade" looks like... our new normal looks pretty crappy most days but some days it looks just fine and either way it is tinged with guilt over not feeling or doing the right thing.
I think the biggest thing I keep trying to remember is that my God is for me and loves me deeply. He loves me so much that He gave up His son so that on February 10, 2017, my son could live. George Mason isn't alive on this earth, but he is very much alive in the presence of his Heavenly Father. A gracious God who loves him and who loves that sweet boy's mama. If I sit down and am intentional about remembering that, I don't have to be consumed with sadness. That doesn't mean I'm not sad, it just means that for me, it's ok to be happy when happiness is appropriate and I don’t have to feel guilty about it. I have a super sweet, independent, joy filled daughter that loves me so very much. I'm thankful for that. I have a husband who is hurting along side me and going through this life fully with me. I'm thankful for that. Each day I wake up with the intent to purposefully find the things to be thankful for and to take joy in. Every new morning I thank God for the mercies He has for me for this day.
I'm really thankful for Gods grace in my grief. I'm so glad that I can be mad, sad, disappointed, frustrated, or any other emotion that shows up each day, and He doesn't change because of it. I'm human, imperfect, and I'm not ok most of the time, but He doesn't care about any of that. In fact, He knows exactly how I feel because He'sbeen through this same kind of loss, and He gives me exactly what I need, when I need it. Sometimes I didn't even know I needed it.
Yesterday I came across a versefrom Jeremiah that made me stop in my tracks and just smile at God for a moment. "Your words were found, and I ate them, and your words became to me a joy and the delight of my heart, for I am called by your name, O Lord, God of hosts." (Jer 15:16) I needed that. Those words. I needed to hear that His words could be my joy in each day. That my heart could delight after them. I'm going to be ok today because my God loves me and because His word is like manna. And that's a heck of a lot better than the guilt filled lemonade I've been trying to make on my own.