fresco at the Karlskirche in vienna (by Johann...

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“Pain has an element of blank;

it cannot recollect

a time when it began or yet

a time when it was not.

It has no future but itself

its infinite realms contain

the past, enlightened to perceive

new periods of pain.”

Emily Dickenson

Grief is a funny animal.  Just when it seems to have subsided a bit, it raises its  ugly head and makes itself known again.  Grief comes in waves and spasms; it suffocates.  And yet, it is in the midst of the most painful moments that God sends  a Comforter to stand quietly by us until we can breathe again. The calming presence of the Holy Spirit envelops us as a protective covering, mitigating the damage done to our souls. Angels come to our aid, to walk with us when we can’t see, and keep us from stumbling or falling.

Pain purifies, clarifies, and penetrates our defenses, our walls, our masks. It both unifies and equalizes leaders, followers and go-betweens.

Time does not heal all wounds, but all healing takes time.  Sometimes we don’t heal.  But we can rest assured that though our outward man – our body – perishes by the day, inwardly our spirit grows ever stronger and stronger.