Our lives were forever changed the day we lost Corey. He was an amazing man who loved the Lord and his family with all that he was. The pain of losing him is like no other. Our only comfort comes from knowing we will see him again someday.

I have moved the slideshow played at Corey's service to it's own post page above, titled "Corey's Memorial Service - August 10, 2010"

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Saturday, September 25, 2010

What if ??? I believe; help my unbelief ! (Mark 9:24)

I was struggling in the early days following Corey's death with doubts about my beliefs.  What if all that I am placing my hope in isn't real?  What if Corey's body is in the ground and there really is no heaven?  What if I never will get to be with him again?  As a believer in Christ and despite being brought up in the church from an early age I still have doubts sometimes.  It can be scary to verbalize this.  My good friend Stacy and I were talking one night a couple weeks ago and she (also a Christian) shared the same exact fears/doubts that I had been feeling.  Stacy found out the day before Corey died that Rachel, the baby girl she is carrying has anencephaly and aside from God doing a miracle Rachel will not live long...maybe minutes, maybe a few hours, maybe less...You can check out her story on her blog at:  www.thegiftofrachelslife.blogspot.com  Her blog is beautiful...she is my inspiration and helped me get started with my blog.

One of God's provisions in this time of grief is that he has given me a close friend who is going through the grief process herself, again, beginning just the day before Corey's passing...Stacy helped me plan Corey's funeral only to have to begin planning Rachel's service just days after.  We have gone shopping for headstones together as well.  I never thought I would be having to do these things in my early 30's.  Having Stacy to walk this journey with me has been such a blessing from God.  

So, I was relieved when Stacy shared the same fears with me about death, Heaven, and all that we believe.  I wasn't brave enough to share it at that time, but she was, and it gives me courage now to share it with all of you because I know I'm not alone in feeling this way. We continued our discussion and talked about how perhaps we needed to do a Bible study together on the topic of Heaven.

I went home a bit later and was getting ready to read my Bible at bedtime.  I stuffed my pen into my Bible, as I like to make notes sometimes.  I got into bed and went to get my pen.  As I went to retrieve it from the pages of my Bible, I noticed that I had unknowingly stuck it in 1 Thessalonians chapter 4.  I have a study Bible that I like to use that groups the verses with topics and gives you questions to ponder about the text and such. The topic on the page I opened to was titled, "The Hope of Christ's Coming."  As an intro to the text, it read, " Maybe you have fears about what will happen when you die or when Christ returns.  In this passage, Paul seeks to calm our fears and encourage us to look forward to the day we meet our Maker."  Then the first question it posed was, "What fears do you have about death?"  Hmmm...I started to get goose bumps at this "coincidence."  I went on to read the verses which included 1 Thessalonians 4:13-5:11.  Some of the verses that really spoke to my fears were:

v.13 "Brothers, we do not want you to be ignorant about those who fall asleep (who die), or to grieve like the rest of men, who have no hope.  v14.  We believe that God will bring with Jesus those who have fallen asleep (died) in him"

and 5:9-10, "For God did not appoint us to suffer wrath but to receive salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ.  v10  He died for us so that, whether we are awake or asleep, we may live together with him."

The next day I had gone to the cemetery to visit Corey's grave site.  The gravestone that is right behind our plots (right at his feet) is a rather large, very nice (and probably expensive) black granite headstone.  I thought I would take another look at it as I knew it had a couple of Bible verses on it but couldn't remember which ones.  I got goose bumps once again when I saw that one of the verses was from 1 Thessalonians 4:16...sandwiched in between the 2 passages I shared above.

It reads: "for the Lord himself will come down from heaven, with a loud command, with the voice of the archangel and with the trumpet call of God, and the dead in Christ will rise first."
For context purposes it goes on to say, "v17  After that, we who are still alive and are left will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air.  And so we will be with the Lord forever.  Therefore encourage each other with these words."

I cannot accept that my coming across these verses was mere "coincidence" but that God was deliberate in leading me to them to encourage and strengthen my belief in Him.  What a loving and responsive God we have!!

Just the other day I was listening to Nicole Nordeman's cd titled "Brave."  There is a song titled, "What if?"  Here are some of the lyrics.  If you want to give it a listen, scroll down to the playlist at the bottom of this page and select it.


What if you're right?
And he (Jesus) was just another nice guy
What if you're right?
What if it's true?
They say the cross will only make a fool of you
And what if it's true?

What if he takes his place in history
With all the prophets and the kings
Who taught us love and came in peace
But then the story ends
What then?

But what if you're wrong?
What if there's more?
What if there's hope you never dreamed of hoping for?
What if you jump?
And just close your eyes?
What if the arms that catch you, catch you by surprise?
What if He's more than enough?
What if it's love?

What if you dig
Way down deeper than your simple-minded friends
What if you dig?
What if you find
A thousand more unanswered questions down inside
That's all you find?

What if you pick apart the logic
And begin to poke the holes
What if the crown of thorns is no more
Than folklore that must be told and retold?

But what if you're wrong?
What if there's more?
What if there's hope you never dreamed of hoping for?
What if you jump?
And just close your eyes?
What if the arms that catch you, catch you by surprise?
What if He's more than enough?
What if it's love?

You've been running as fast as you can
You've been looking for a place you can land for so long
But what if you're wrong?


So, for those of you who are indifferent to God or resistant to His words, I would ask you, "What if?"

2 comments:

  1. Dearest Jill,
    I am sure more than either of us will know has those same questions. "What If?" Isn't it so like the evil one to tempt us to feel that doubt? How awesome is it that God has answered (quickly) when the questions did come! I call that "Godcidence" No coincidence here! Praise God.
    I know at some of my trying times... I have asked those same questions and God gave me "reassurance" almost immediately that HE IS REAL and all He has said in His word is TRUTH!
    Emotions... Being Human... brings us to difficult places. He is more than able as you have testified in your own life.
    Thank you for being so transparent and sharing your insight and encounters with His Precious Spirit as you walk daily seeking HIS way through your changed life. I for one look at you and see Christ. Thank you.
    In His Grip...In His Love,
    Diane

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  2. Godincidence...I like that :)) Thanks for following my blog Diane! Thank you for your encouragment! Love, Jill

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