Moving Forward With Grief

Last week, I listened to a TED Talk titled, We don’t “move on” from grief. We move forward with it. I am including a link here to the video for you to watch if it interests you. For me, it was fascinating and so describes my grieving process. I also discussed it with the gentleman from my Life Group I am dating, and he agreed as well that it says a lot.

Moving on indicates you have gotten over the loss of your loved one. That will never completely happen nor should it happen. Henry (my gentleman friend who has been widowed for 2 years) and I both talk freely about our spouses. They were a huge part of our lives for many years and helped make us who we are. Jerry and I experienced 50 years together–that cannot and should not be forgotten or moved past.

Moving forward with my grief indicates I am not stuck in a position that is unhealthy nor am I putting my life with Jerry behind me. I am taking the sweet memory of his presence in my life with me as I form a new life. There are times when tears flow freely and will continue to do so. We take our grief with us not to be a burden or depressing but to appreciate and honor their memory.

Genesis 35:3 – “Then come, let us go up to Bethel, where I will build an altar to God, who answered me in the day of my distress and who has been with me wherever I have gone.” My grief can be compared to building an altar to God to keep the memories alive. I keep the box of Jerry’s ashes on my night stand and have pictures of our stroke days throughout the house. His memory is alive in my life and is a constant reminder of God who helped me in my day of distress and has been with me wherever I have gone. I am so blessed to have been his wife for 50 years. And now I am blessed to have someone to share memories with as he talks about his wife and their memories together.

The picture I am sharing here is when I was coming out of the garden tomb. Because Jesus rose from a tomb similar to this, I can look forward to rising some day as well to be reunited with Jerry eternally. This is especially appropriate with Easter coming this Sunday.

We rise to walk in the newness of life. (Romans 6:4)

Today I am thankful for:

  • My experiences in Israel/Egypt.
  • Spring time with the garden I enjoy so much.
  • One of our Iranian students plans to be baptized Easter Sunday! Praise God.
  • So many wonderful memories of Jerry in my life.
  • Moving forward with my grief to honor the memory our our life together.
  • Sharing those memories and my life with Henry as he shares memories of his wife.
  • Our church that is excited about sharing the Gospel.
  • Tuesdays with David, my grandson.
  • Having granddaughter Kinsey here this weekend and I will have time with her on Friday.
  • God’s answer in my distress and continuing to walk with me every day.

Please pray for Aman, our Iranian student. His baptism will alienate him from his family and country. We have been his family here already but will be even more so now. We love this sweet young man and his driving desire to seek the truth.

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Lois Cox, Ph.D., has roots in Dallas, Texas, but met her husband, Jerry, at Oklahoma Christian College, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma in 1966. They married in 1967 and started a life together of serving God in several locations. Seven of their years were in full-time ministry in churches in Midwest City, Oklahoma, Tulsa, Oklahoma, and Ft. Collins, Colorado. Most of Lois’s career has been spent in education at the high school, technical college, and university levels. Lois holds four degrees in education including a Ph.D. completed in her late sixties in instructional technology and online learning. On February 24, 2016, Lois was plummeted into the role of caregiver for her husband who suffered a rare and serious bilateral thalamic stroke. The next 22 months were spent in full-time care of Jerry in skilled nursing, hospitals, and at home. Jerry passed away December 30, 2017. Since that time Lois has been focusing on sharing her experiences with others to encourage and teach them to depend on the Lord during similar stressful times. Her book, 22 Months with Jerry, will be available soon.

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