Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Sitting Alone in a Cemetery

Monday night was probably the hardest night I've had since the first week following Chris' death. And, interestingly, it followed one of the better days I've had in recent weeks.

I started a new job Monday with an organization that I greatly admire. It's actually a result of years of prayer and fasting...and the journey began this week. Yes, it's stressful beginning a new job. Yes, it's even more stressful beginning a new job within weeks of burying my husband. However, this is a position and an organization that I KNOW God has called me to and even more...I'm convinced He called me to it at this EXACT time in my life for purposes not completely known to me just yet. But...I trust Him completely and must obey His lead.

So, after having a wonderful first day at my new job...I couldn't wait to get home Monday night and tell Chris all about it. Yes, while driving home...I literally thought that for just a brief moment in time! Just as the thought escaped my brain, I caught myself.

What are you thinking Leah? Chris is gone. Pull yourself together.

Almost as quickly as I the thought came to the forefront of my fled.

I began to think about what it might have been like had he been at home waiting on me (he usually got home from work first). More than likely, he and Anna would be planning a special celebration dinner. He loved to cook and did the majority of it in our home. He probably would have baked my favorite treat for a sugar celebration as well. While eating dinner as a family, I probably would have monopolized the conversation while unloading the events of the day for his and Anna's listening pleasure. Yes...that's probably what it might have been like. But instead...

There was no special celebratory dinner.

There was no special dessert treat.

There was no family conversation around the dinner table.

Instead...I went to the cemetery. As a Christian, I know my husband isn't truly there, but I still can't help but feel close to him in some special way when I go sit beside his grave. As I got out of the car and walked towards his grave, I looked around and noticed that I was the ONLY one in the cemetery. This is a pretty big cemetery, but at that moment I was completely alone.

I sat down on the grass by my husband's freshly dug grave. At first...I said nothing. Then, I began to tell Chris (and the grass and silk flowers surrounding me) everything about my day that I had wanted to share with him in person. If somebody had walked up behind me at the moment, they might have thought I was crazy. But, I didn't care. I shared it all. I had to.

Then, I began to pray...well, I actually began a time of questioning God. It wasn't pretty blog friends, but it was necessary. came. The downpour of tears. A flood of tears like nothing I'd cried since the day I found out (three weeks ago today, actually) that my husband was gone. Through my sobs, I managed to say one last thing to God at that moment...

Please Father...please Abba...please let me know you're here. I know your Word says you'll never leave me or forsake. I really do know that to be true, but right now...I need to FEEL you. I have no right to ask for this, but I really need to feel your presence, because I'm feeling very alone right now.

As I continued to sit and wait in the stillness of that moment...a soft wind quickly developed and literally passed through my hair and across my skin, and I knew. He was here. Thank you sweet Abba. I felt no other breezes other than this particular one the rest of the time I was there. But, right after the wind swept across my body, God spoke into my heart something that went like this...

Sweet daughter, come to me with your heavy heart and give it completely to me. Cry as many tears as you need to as often as you need to. Ask me anything you want to ask me. I never grow tired and weary of listening to you my child. I love you, and you're right...I'll never leave you or forsake you.

So, while sitting alone in the cemetery Monday night...God made His presence vividly known to me. And then...we sat...together.


  1. OH my word that was beautiful Leah. I mean, your words, your heart, and I appreciate you sharing it with us.

  2. This is beautiful, Leah. I'm sure God will continue to make His presence known to you and you'll find yourself developing intimacy with God in new ways. For those of us praying for you, it's so encouraging to hear you share the ways God is meeting you where you the midst of your pain.

  3. My mother is buried in the family graveyard, right behind my house. I don't go out there every night, but it is so peaceful and I've planted flowers that I tend. Tonight there was a wind too and I felt close to God. Then I came in and read Heb 13:5. Seems like God was speaking to us in the same way. Praying for you

  4. WOW!!!! Awesome. God has surely granted you many talents all for glorifying him. You are so brave and strong. Praying for you. You are truly blessed by God.

  5. God bless you. There are no words.

    May the Lord continue to ministre to you and hold you up in very tangible ways, in Jesus' name.

  6. Your precious moments with the Lord are so tender, they move me to tears. Thank you for giving us a glimpse of those sacred times when heaven kisses earth and showers down love.

    you continue to remain in my prayers.

    love, samantha

  7. Leah, I'm so glad to hear that the Lord Jesus met you while your heart was so heavy with grief. I too liked to visit Susana's grave stone at the cemetery and it did feel like there was some sort of a greater closeness with her when I was there.

    I'm so glad that our God is big enough and tender enough to allow us to flail around in His arms as we wrestle with such heavy things. One day...He will make all things new.

    We're crying out to Him right along side of you as we walk our own journey of indescribable pain and anguish, yet also seeing and feeling the presence of Jesus along the way.

  8. Leah, wow, what a bitter-sweet writing. All I can say at this point is 'thank you for being one awesome woman of INTEGRITY! Your life is speaking volume to ALL around you and Anna. You both stay in our prayers~ Love, Kim and Randy Teague

  9. How blessed we are to have you as a member of our BRB "family"! I know, in my heart, you are in the place God set apart for you and I am so very grateful that He chose to share you with us!

  10. Linked over here from Kimberly's blog and regret not having met you in person at SHE Speaks this past weekend.

    I praise God for the process He is taking you through of sharing your wounded heart with others. Writing about my grief when my Dad died in a drowning accident back in 2008, after having disowned me for converting from Islam to Christianity, was what aided the process of healing. It's taken almost three years for my heart not to hurt everytime I think of him and the possibilities of our relationship had he been alive but God is a faithful healer and He has given me complete peace with it.

    And I could totally relate to going to the cemetry and talking to our loved ones. I do it every time I visit Pakistan. I just talk to my Daddy as though he was there and from the perspective of a loving, attached relationship like it was before he disowned me. It helped me deal with the grief and pain of losing him so suddenly and without being reconciled to him.

    Of course you never forget that person, you never stop shedding tears, you never forget how much you miss them on special moments like weddings and births, and graduations; but God's peace that surpasses all understanding remains through it all, glory to God.

    Jesus love and blessings to you sweet sister.