Today is Saturday August 22, 2015, a day I don’t usually write Victory Calls. However, today is a different day. It’s THE day that my one and only daughter’s spirit and soul left earth and entered Heaven. How amazing is that? How Love Himself pursues us is a mystery we shall never solve—at least, not today.
Today, I’m sitting here at my desk keenly, deeply and more painfully than I can express, aware of the deep hole left in my heart because “she” is no longer here. And while I miss the presence of “her” my heart is glad and somehow rejoices in knowing “she” is with the Father! How cool, how awesome, how amazing is that?
Quite a few weeks ago, sometime toward the end of Spring, a precious young friend came to my place of work and ministry and planted some sunflower plants outside the window of my tiny office building. She did this as a surprise for me in memory of my beloved daughter because she knew that sunflowers were her favorite.
So, you can imagine my anticipation as week after week I’d arrive to work, walk up the path to the office and peer at the plants to see if they were showing evidence of growth. Yep! Week after week, they grew taller and taller. Now the wait began for the actually flower to begin its budding. I waited…and waited…and waited. Except for the plant itself getting taller and taller there was no sign at all that a flower was about to emerge.
In various places all around town as I drove here and there I saw the flowers of others popping up and out, stretching out in all their glory, reaching upward toward the heat of the sun. And still…I waited and began to wonder if perhaps there would be a no-show of blossom for me. But I didn’t lose heart or hope. Even though the end of August was approaching I continued to look for it…and wait for it.
And then it happened. I arrived at work a few days ago and there it was—a tight green little ball of goodness smack dab in the middle top of each plant stalk. By now the actual plant stem was as tall as me—and I’m five feet ten inches tall! So, to see that wonderful green goodness renewed my anticipation of what was surely coming. That brings us to today.
Today is exactly one year from the day that my daughter died. Today is that day. Every fiber of my being is hyper-charged with awareness of that and I feel so much! I awoke today, thinking…wondering, “Lord, how will I enter this day? How will You show up in this day?” In the days leading up to today I even wondered, “Will it even matter? Will it even feel like something to wake up and be in THAT day?”
And…here I am, IN THAT day, and it definitely feels like something. The air is fresh. The sun shines bright. It FEELS like something. It FEELS like THAT day and it is beautiful.
Then to add full glory to the day, one of the flowers—yep, just one of them, is in full bloom! How cool is that?!
All that’s left to say is God IS good! His amazing love does, in fact, care for us in the micro details of our lives. And TODAY I am sure of this one thing: He who began a good work, IS faithful, faithful, faithful to complete it. He leaves nothing to chance and He leaves nothing unfinished.
Stephanie Dale Paul
Stephanie D. Paul serves as part of the Addiction Recovery Team at America’s Keswick as Director of Women of Character. She has been married for over 30 years to Sesky Paul who is a graduate of the Colony of Mercy. They have two grown children.
Her single focus in ministry at Keswick is to image Christ in grace and truth to wounded and hurting women, encouraging them to make Jesus the truest Lover of their soul and the One in whom all hope lies.