If You Know, You Know
It's been a week since Pete's funeral.
Since we started his cancer journey, we have seen people being the hands and feet of Jesus.
Since then, but especially in the last weeks of his life and this past week and a half, we have seen Jesus in so many ways.
Washed our clothes
Helped us move
Run things to Goodwill
Loaded up our storage shed
Laughed with us
Cried with us
Told us memories of Pete
Reached out and checked on us
Gone on walks
Spoken to us on the phone
Sent video or audio messages
Cleaned our house
Treated us to meals/GrubHub/DoorDash/groceries
Helped us with rent costs
Gotten together with me over coffee to tell me how they survived the first days of widowhood
Done projects around our house
When I was the person trying to help someone going through a hard time, I often would minimize the affect I could make or the help I could be.
This journey has shown me that each of us only know what we know. But, that is a blessing in two big ways.
First of all, we are all different parts of one body. God made us to each do His work how we are suited. One of my friends is not tech savvy at all but she thrives and enjoys when it comes to organizing. Another knows how laundry can overwhelm others but she actually is calmed by doing laundry and instilling order in that way. Each and every one of you have blessed with your part of God's ministry to us in the difficult time.
Secondly, widowhood is not something I ever expected in my life but I have gained so much hope and encouragement from those who have walked before me and survived it. They have encountered immense turmoil and pain and are thriving years later. None of this happened overnight but it also happened because of their decision to trust in God and fight the good fight.
Each one of us have things that only we know, because of our childhood, experiences we have had in our lives. The key to community, though, is not to let what you know only be yours to grow from. Life is isolating and harder when you're facing it yourself.
My encouragement today is 1) don’t underestimate how your efforts to help someone else and the difference they can make, 2) don't do life alone, and 3) if you know, because you've dealt with something difficult, seek out others to help.
Our goal with Stages has been, and will always be, to do just that. What we know can be used to help and bless others and that is what we will continue to do.
If you know of someone fighting cancer or friends/family of a fighter, please let them know about Stages and that they can message me on the site or social media.
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