Thursday, August 15, 2013

The Pregnant Pause of Grief by Brenda J. Wood

Book Blurb:

The Pregnant Pause of Grief follows the aftermath of loss. From deepest thought to trivial imaginings, the author holds nothing back. She bares her heart to the reader while also demanding they examine their own. In the process both writer and reader discover who they really are.


Angry? Heartbroken? Read this:

CHAPTER 1

What Is Our Script?
By the end of this month, I expect to know my own name. My friend didn’t know hers for three months. Just past two now, I realize I, too, hardly know my own name.

Some days, thick fog separates me from who I am or where I am. Pregnant with grief, hormones out of whack, and tears pouring forth for no reason, I encourage this new life within me. I struggle to believe it will come to full term and separate itself from me.

Perhaps you too find yourself struggling in your current life situation. You feel alone as you creep through this thing. Maybe, like me, you wonder if God still cares. I desperately search for the truth. I invite you to join me as we find out together.

My life situation is that I’ve become this new creature called “Widow.” Ron died about two months ago. If you include our dating years, we spent fifty years as a couple. Together we trusted in this Bible verse: “For I know the thoughts and plans that I have for you, says the Lord, thoughts and plans for welfare and peace and not for evil, to give you hope in your final outcome” (Jeremiah 29:11).

I’m reading plans now that I do not care for at all. How can Ron’s death give me hope and a future? How can this plan prosper and not harm me? Nothing about Ron’s passing seems good. On the other hand, God has a reputation for being good. Maybe that’s the difference.

I recently heard a TV message about this being our best life. The speaker insisted that we choose happiness every day.

“Let’s see you lose your spouse and still say those same words and mean them!” I shouted. That frightened me. Where did those thoughts come from? I believed in God’s best for me, didn’t I? Still, how could anyone (especially me!) lose their beloved other half and continue to choose happiness?

That event led me on this path of self-discovery. A crisis calls us to evaluate what we believe about God and why we believe it. Do we really trust God the way we say we do? Do we really believe that His plans are better than ours? Don’t we have to find out? God says He loves us and insists His plans are the best. All He asks is that we trust Him and willingly follow His path. Is any of that even possible as we journey through heartbreaking grief?

One day at the doctor’s office a young mom and her four-year-old twins kept us all in smiles. We needed a laugh because my darling husband, Ron, was suffering through the last stages of cancer.

Hoping for a little peace and quiet, Mom picked a children’s book off the shelf, arranged the little ones on either side, and began to read.

The girls did not like Mom’s book one bit. It was one of those learn-your-alphabet things. They had no interest in A-B-Cs. They’d picked out happy cartoon-type books. They begged and whined for Mom to discard her plan and use their particular picture books.

The disappointed twins made a lot of noise, but Mom paid no attention. She calmly continued to read. Eventually both girls set their books aside and listened to Mom’s soft, gentle reading voice.

The book she shared could prepare them for their life’s journey. Her book could make a difference in the pathways they walked, the jobs they’d hold, and the income they’d earn. Mom gave them what they needed instead of what they wanted.

Can it be that God wants to teach us, but we don’t care to learn? If we did, would we go the extra mile, build peace into our hearts, and enjoy wisdom in our souls? Does wisdom mean coming alongside God while He steadfastly points out new paths? Or does it mean acting like four-year-olds, demanding our own way?

Surely that slows down the process of change and learning.

When the Answers Aren’t

Lord, when our answers aren’t there,
We question Your motives.
When our answers don’t come,
We beg for relief.
When Your answers look different,
We cry out, “Not right!”
But all of that time You’re reading our story.
You whisper, “Just trust Me.
I’ve planned for your best.
I know where we’re going.
Just hang on and rest.”

I keep finding messages like Psalm 40:1-2: “I waited patiently and expectantly for the Lord; and He inclined to me and heard my cry. He drew me up out of a horrible pit [a pit of tumult and of destruction], out of the miry clay (froth and slime), and set my feet upon a rock, steadying my steps and establishing my goings.”

And Habakkuk 3:17–19: Though the fig tree does not blossom and there is no fruit on the vines, [though] the product of the olive fails and the fields yield no food, though the flock is cut off from the fold and there are no cattle in the stalls, Yet I will rejoice in the Lord; I will exult in the [victorious] God of my salvation!

The Lord God is my Strength, my personal bravery, and my invincible army; He makes my feet like hinds’ feet and will make me to walk [not to stand still in terror, but to walk] and make [spiritual] progress upon my high places [of trouble, suffering, or responsibility]!

I’ve trusted God and His promises for years. Will they hold true in widowhood? I don’t know yet. I’m reading my journal scribbles again, reminding myself of times when God proved His faithfulness. Will I come to the same conclusions as I did then? Will I continue to trust Him, even in this most terrible time of my life? God never failed me before. Is it likely He will now?

I invite you to travel your painful journey with me. Let’s remember how God met us in our worst places and brought good from each one. In the past I learned that when the way is rough, our faith has a chance to grow. Is this still true? Is God still who He says He is? If He is, then through these new experiences we’ll become the biggest mountain of faith you ever saw. Maybe mine is hiding in my twenty extra pounds! In that case, I’d better not lose it!



Book Trailer:


To buy the book, go here;
amazon
Blog
barnesandnoble



About Brenda:
Brenda J. Woods calls herself the ABC girl because she's survived the alphabet biggies of abuse, bulimia and cancer. A popular motivational speaker, Brenda is also the author of several other books including:



      Meeting Myself, Snippets from a Binging and Bulging Mind 
      The Big Red Chair-storybook for grieving children
      Heartfelt-366 Devotions for Common Sense Living
      God, Gluttony & You, the Bible Study
      The Plate Family Dishes Up. A children's story


    Connect with Brenda here:http://heartfeltdevotionals.com
    Twitter is @brendajwood



    Brenda J. Wood is giving away a copy of The Pregnant Pause of Grief. The giveaway is only available to U.S. addresses.
    To be entered in the book giveaway, leave a comment along with your email address. You may enter the book giveaway twice--once on each spotlight post. (It's not too late to go back and leave a comment on yesterday's post)








    Happy Reading!
    Caroline Brown






    3 comments:

    Boos Mum said...

    Hi. Thanks for sharing that personal excerpt. We lost my father almost a year ago from cancer. My mom still will not call herself a widow. She is having a tough time. I would like to be entered to win your book for her. I have purchased other books for grief for her, but none from the pen of another widow. Thank you.

    sweetdarknectar at gmail dot com

    Linda Kish said...

    This book sounds wonderful. I would love to read it.

    lkish77123 at gmail dot com

    bonton said...

    Grief is a subject that everyone has to deal with, eventually. My father has stage 4 cancer - this book should explain some of the feelings & situations I will experience, when his time comes.

    Thanks for the opportunity to win a copy of your book!

    bonnieroof60(at)yahoo(dot)com

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