In which there is a dark doorway…

by Craig on September 20, 2011

gitzngirl Sara Frankle choose joy choosejoysource

The tears are fewer now. I get distracted so easily. But when I write of Sara they return.
When I tweet the name @gitzengirl Ƹ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒ #ChooseJoy (and like it’s now all I write, it’s also all I tweet)…

every time…

tears…

salt, wet, hot…

days nonstop…

and now…

when prompted…

and right now they’re prompted…

and they roll…

and I squint and blink to see letters onscreen…

and worry about forgetting this moment…

and I don’t want to forget…

gitzngirl Sara Frankle choose joy choosejoysource

but. I . will.

It happens when we fall in love.
It happens with our faith.
It happens with everything new and shiny…
it gets older, then finds a home…
in the closet…
because this world is broken…
and we are broken…
and we forget…

I hate that!

I. Hate. That!!

And I hate that I’m thinking about me again.
Oh me of little faith…
and heart even smaller.
This isn’t about me.
This is about eternity and Sara who believes hard in eternity…
who stands at eternity’s gates.

The God I’ve had this relationship with for 27 years…
the one I have been tied to closer than anyone else in my life…
the one I believe in, the one I love, the one who speaks to me and I to him…

the one whose child I am, because we are all just children to him…

as is Sarah…

gitzngirl Sara Frankle choose joy choosejoysource

and she is leaning deep and heavy into his arms…

And he’ll hold her.

And so again I stop…
and pray…
always with the praying right now, unending…
even though God only needs to hear once.

And it’s still the same…
sometimes it’s conversation…
sometimes as short as this…

For Sara, faith, peace, courage, and to know.

Because right now she needs to believe so much as to be certain.
And even though she’s “sleeping” more and it looks like she’s peaceful…
the mind and heart and spirit always race and wrestle at times like this…
even if we can’t see.

And we all talk bold words…
“She’s going home”…
“She’ll be with Him”…

but death remains a dark doorway…

gitzngirl Sara Frankle choose joy choosejoysource

… an abrupt event…puzzling…incomprehensible.

We see the present-ness of life, and past and future.

But death is a radical break…
no context…
only hints.

Courage is needed so badly for this final lifetime journey.

The end of this life is a jump to something other than what we know – bliss, nothing, or judgment.

Big words of faith come easy for those of us not staring death in its horrid face.

We can only partially imagine or see heaven.

Is Sara catching glimpses right now?

gitzngirl-Sara-Frankle-choose-joy-choosejoysource

I hope so…
with every tear streaking the face…
with every thump in my chest…
I hope, I doubt, I believe, I trust, I worry…
I desperately want our Father to give her glimpses of heaven, now!
Because the glimpses will bring her peace, faith, courage and knowledge.

All of us…

me too…

so quick to speak of how she’s ready…

and how it’s ok.

It isn’t OK!!!!!!

Maybe death is something not to fear…

but still it’s fearful, and dreadful…

and ugly, and cruel…

a dark doorway to be passed through.

So Sara…

I’ll keep praying…

until. you. pass. through.

{ 14 comments… read them below or add one }

Hillcrest Cottage September 20, 2011 at 9:36 am

Wow. Powerful. I love what you said about the leap into the unknown. Only “faith” can take the “un” away and make it known.

Hebrews 11:1 “Faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen.”

Faith-filled eyes see as clearly as if it “is”… “is” being the spiritual world as real as this physical world.

I have a feeling your Sara probably has a different set of eyes from you and I… because God give grace when needed, doesn’t He?
Still… God grant us more grace… and more faith.

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Craig September 20, 2011 at 12:29 pm

I have a feeling that faith isn’t a problem for Sara, neither peace, nor courage. . I pray for those things for her – probably in a self-centered way – that’s what I think I would need – so that’s what I think she would need – and so that’s my prayer for her. But thank you – I can use a little comfort here – because I worry – and I know she’s going home – and I want that voyage to be peaceful – I know the final destination will be. Thank you very much again. And I did okay with the tears – until just. now ツ God bless and keep you!

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Victoria September 20, 2011 at 1:12 pm

“Precious in the sight of the Lord, is the death of His saints.”
She’s about to embark on the journey of an eternity time.
I don’t see that door as dark and I don’t think she does either.
It’s alright Craig, it’s all right.
It’s the order of things. “All the days ordained for me were written in Your Book before one of them came to be.”
I would never want anyone, known to me or unknown to me, to lament my last days…to cause me to hang on to my earthly life for their sake. I would pray hard that they would only rejoice and they would only look forward to reunification in a purely exquisite place.
May the peace of God (the peace that passes ALL understanding) and may His comfort be upon you now.
I hope you don’t mind my saying.
v

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Craig September 20, 2011 at 1:23 pm

Victoria, I’m smiling at your wisdom – and smiles have been rare – thank you. I too doubt that it’s a dark door for Sara – she’s got a mighty faith. But just in case, just in case, I pray. And I so, so, so agree with you – God cares much more about our life, then our earthly life. Still, it was a nice reminder, thank you. And do I mind you saying all this? No – I was blessed by it – thank you – and God bless you Victoria!

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Martha Orlando September 20, 2011 at 5:36 pm

“For Sara, faith, peace, courage, and to know.” No better prayer could be offered for a dear friend soon to pass from this veil of tears, the tears your heart cries with all sincerity and love for Sara. We grieve because we’re human, we hope for eternal life because our Lord promises this for those who believe in Him. I pray, too, that our gracious and loving God is giving Sara glimpses of His heavenly kingdom to assuage any remnant of fear in this final journey.

I pray, too, for you, Craig, for your impending loss of a friend, for comfort from the Lord, for assurance that He will make everything right in the end.
May God continue to bless and keep you, my friend,
Martha

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Craig September 21, 2011 at 7:52 pm

Martha, thank you. I might have told you this already – but it’s kind of a self-centered prayer – I thought about what I would want – what I would need if my life were ending – and those were the things – so that’s what I pray. And comfort? I really, really, really think it’s much more important for her to go to be with our Lord – well. I’m sorry for returning this comment so late – I’m weary. I didn’t cry today about Sarah until I started returning comments – and the tears are back – maybe my body needed a break. Anyway, thank you Martha. And God bless you!

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Juanita Dueck September 20, 2011 at 10:43 pm

I recommend “Heaven is for Real” for EVERYONE. We are spirit beings and the moment our spirits leave our bodies we are free from the pain and trappings of this world and our shells. I always find “near death” or “back from death” experiences fascinating because regardless of whether the individual knew Christ at their passing or not, they all have similar experiences of being able to see their fleshly body and those around them but are completely at peace and don’t want to come back. I think that is a fabulous assurance for us that death and Heaven are things to look forward to, not fear~ for those who are in Christ Jesus. Heaven really is for real~ and Sara is going to get there sooner than most of us. I rejoice in how awesome that moment will be for her when she gets to see Jesus face to face!

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Craig September 21, 2011 at 8:03 pm

Juanita, I do know that heaven is real, I do believe – of course I believe. I’m just thinking that no matter how we dress it up – and no matter how amazing what is waiting on the other side of the door IS. It’s still a dark doorway. Even for someone of great faith it might be a dark doorway. It’s an awesome doorway – but isn’t it honestly little scary for all of us. At the beginning of this year – I named the year – because a Ann – connect. The news of Sara last week has had my heart in a tailspin. I hope I didn’t come across as not believing in heaven – of course I do. But my heart is bleeding right now – and some of it is coming out in words– and Juanita – thank you for reading my words. God bless you!

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Debbie September 21, 2011 at 1:33 am

God bless you, Craig, and your honesty and your prayers. Thank you for being here for us and understanding the humanness of what we all can feel and helping us to know that He knows and is covering Sara and all of us as well.

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Craig September 21, 2011 at 8:06 pm

Debbie, I just want – I really, really, really want Sara to transition smoothly – that the doorway not be dark – that there be Angels everywhere – that the move from here – to there – is full of comfort and love. God bless you Debbie! And I’m sorry for replying late – I didn’t cry today – not until just now – but I’m drained.

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Christina September 21, 2011 at 7:04 am

Praying! The book that has given me the most hope about heaven is Heaven by Randy Alcorn. When I’ve lost loved ones, death has been where rubber meets the road in my faith. It’s a hard road but joy does come in the morning. Blessings to you my friend!

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Craig September 21, 2011 at 8:11 pm

Christina, thank you so much for reading, so much! I know of the book. And I hope I didn’t come across as not having hope about heaven – it’s just that I don’t want us to get all lost in the religious sayings – the doorway is a dark one as it’s approached – I’m sure once it’s crossed the light shines brilliantly – but I can see the doorway being dark – until then. And just in case it is for Sara – well – I was just writing my heart. And I’ve used the exact same expression, “rubber meets the road”. I used it of my mom when she passed away. And the rubber is meeting the road now to. And I will choose joy again – this is not the first time that my heart has been slain to the core by someone else’s heart aches this year. I named this year connect – and before it my heart rarely connected – and sometimes this year – I can’t stop it from connecting – no matter how much I want to not be so engaged. Thank you Christina. God bless you!

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Michelle September 22, 2011 at 6:19 am

“Is Sara catching glimpses right now?” I lost a friend earlier this year who had a quickly progressing illness similar, yet different, to MS. Like Sara, she never lost her joy. It didn’t matter what what happening to her body, she was so full of grace, of the presence of the Lord,…. In her last days, she was in and out of consciousness and when she would awake she would proclaim (because it was a proclamation!) what Jesus had shown her. He had taken her to heaven, she had seen where she was going, she had no fear. no fear. It was so good to know that the Lord was that close, she lived in the in-between in the last few days. In-between earth and brokenness …. and Heaven and wholeness.

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Craig September 22, 2011 at 6:30 pm

Michelle, that helps. I’ve never seen someone really certain about their faith leave this earth. I’m glad you have. I know Sara is in the in between now – but your comment makes me think that she seeing more light through the dark doorway then I might think – or worry about. God bless you Michelle.

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