JB and I have a moving and wonderfully full and incredibly painful and amazing two weeks.
Is it possible to have all of that rolled into one big lump?
A lot of this stems simply from living in our world. JB's job is simply ... tragic sometimes. He has to tell family members that they have lost someone they love. He had to do that this week.
The other day JB returned home from work after losing a patient. It is always harder to lose someone young. Someone who wasn't expected to die. And to have to tell family members who did not see this coming that they will never see their loved one again seems like an impossible task to accomplish.
I have no idea how he does it.
I often ask JB how he is doing. How are you coping? How are you feeling? Are you okay? He always just nods, maybe says a few words, and says he is fine. But as he wrote this poem, I realized that he isn't. These events stay with us. They stay with him. They are real. They are hard. They are painful.
To be with people while they are grieving is incredibly rewarding and yet so hard. I was doing fine managing some hard things that have rolled our way. I was honored to stand with these people during their tough times. I even got to witness a miracle in one of the situations.
But then last night I got two more bits of news from two different people, and it sort of pushed me over the edge. My heart just hurt so badly. I was crying and couldn't stop. I wanted the pain for these people to end. I went to bed with tears still plastered to my cheeks.
I am sure I can't feel pain like Jesus did and yet I felt like I was dying inside. Not for myself. My life is fine. It is seemingly idyllic right now. I am just simply so overwhelmed with pain for people I love grieving and hurting so much.
This life can be so hard.
But JB's poem reminded me that being here on our farm is exactly what we hoped it would be. When I walk out on the porch, and sit in my rocker, and watch our chickens, and listen to our small brook babbling, and pet our sheep, and scratch bellies on our pigs ...
.... I heal.
And people who come here, to our land, can do the same thing.
We don't know what the Lord has in mind exactly for this 100-acres in TN, but he keeps telling us that it will be a place of "respite and retreat." And everyone who comes tells us that is what they feel here.
I pray peace for my grieving friends today.
And for my own heart as I grieve with them.