Being alone is something I never considered a fear of mine, until the reality of what I thought to be “loneliness” hit me right in the softest spots of my heart on October 2nd, 2013. 4 years of love, romance, friendship, growth, and so many other things came to an abrupt halt because of one wrong turn of a steering wheel and one brief moment of absent mindedness. The man I had loved and grown with for the last 4 years was swept up into Heaven, without me even knowing. Without me even being there to say “I love you. Goodbye” – but isn’t that how these things usually happen?
Jesus tells us that our lives are a vapor, and oh how that is true. Dreams of a future, of engagement rings, and trips to the florist, and exploring bridal shop after bridal shop, and picking out paint colors, and registering for diapers and bottles – all taken and shattered to little pieces, that I could have never begun to put back together in my own strength. And when the words “He’s gone” left my mother’s lips and entered my ears, nothing was there to keep me from losing it – from falling to the ground, from screaming and crying and all at the same time thinking, “This is the worst thing that could ever happen”. My sweet love. My dear friend. Gone.
The rest of the time is a blur, but the few things I remember well are a few conversations I had following that moment. I received a call from my pastor’s wife, who, in a calm and caring voice, said “Traci…how are you?” And before my mind knew what my mouth (and heart) was saying, I replied, “Ohh…I’m sad…but God is still good.” And those four words resonate in my heart and mind and all parts of “me” still today –
God. Is. Still. Good.
The following week was filled with moments with some of my dearest friends that I will never let escape my heart and mind, but the best moments…the sweetest ones…were between me and Jesus. His sweetness and love and patience and grace defeated every ounce of loneliness that tried to enter my mind. He was fighting for me, protecting me, and providing for me before I even knew what I needed in those moments. Thing is, Jesus knew. He knew that morning when I woke up, that at 3:27pm, everything about my life on this Earth would change. He was there, in my room when I got the phone call. He was there as I fell to the floor into the deepest sorrow my heart has known. And at every turn, every trip, and every fall, He went with me. I was not alone, even though that is what the world would have told me. When I felt as though I would never find love again, He reminded me that His love is sufficient. When I could not see my future, He reminded me of His promises over my life.Oh, how He has plans for us – plans to prosper, plans for joy, plans for life. Facing death – sudden, aching, abrupt, and violent death – hurts and tears our hearts away into tiny jagged pieces.
Chaos screamed loud into my heart, telling me nothing was under control. And then I would remember…I would hear His still, small, voice, telling me that Jesus is the same – yesterday, today, and forever.
In the midst of lonely, chaotic, and painful moments, His love does not waver or change.
And now I am here – 7 months later, with a healed heart and an excitement in my spirit for the future Jesus is revealing to me each day. He is still sweet. He is still kind. He is still fierce and fighting for us. He is still good.