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Daily Devotion

Watchful

By Joanne Reese


The noise of the freeway is but a whisper compared to the clamor inside. I make a sharp left into the cemetery. Trees line the winding road that lead to our secret spot. Finding shade underneath the giant evergreen promises perspective.

I nestle in. The air is cool and clean. Silence works like a salve and worries begin to flake away. One dissolves, then another, as I pour my heart on to the pages of my journal. The complicated knot I’ve been wrestling with begins to untangle as I open God’s Word.

I am surrounded by death, yet couldn’t feel more alive. Content with a reminder that I am in season of waiting as far as ministry goes, I realign my own ideas and plans with my Creator.

I’m startled by the slam of a car door. A woman approaches, dressed for the office. Keeping my eyes down, I choose to give her privacy. I feel her heaviness, the weight of what it really means to wait. She brushes the dirt from the headstone, using swift and steady strokes, as if to clear away the horrifying reality.

Waiting hurts.

Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
Blessed are those who mourn, for they will be comforted.
Blessed are the meek, for they will inherit the earth.
Matthew 3:3-5

I focus back on my own grief. So what can I do with the death of a dream? Being a busy wife and mother sometimes makes me feel like my writing has been placed ten feet under. I’ve been asked to wait – ten years. But what if waiting hurts too much?

Her heals hit the pavement, creating a startling rhythm. She steps with determination making her way back to the car, and my guess back to the office. I wonder who has been ripped out of her life. How does she cope with the pain?

As she drives away, I can identify with her coping mechanisms. She goes on. She gets up every morning, and she faces another day. She trudges through the ordinary, and waits to be reunited with her sanity and her heart. All the while, she wonders if she will ever be okay again.

Waiting on God can sometimes feel unbearable. Nevertheless, like the cry of a bird perched on an evergreen in the middle of a cemetery, hope truly can rise above confusion and pain.

God dwells in the chaos of life and in the silence of death, but can only be heard when our hearts are still. Finding peace amidst the pain sometimes means facing all of the things we are terrified of. We go on, muddling through commonplace, trusting that each attempt at swiping away the darkness will carry us unharmed, to the place where real dreams are made.

There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under heaven: a time to be born and a time to die, a time to plant and a time to uproot, a time to kill and a time to heal, a time to tear down and a time to build, a time to weep and a time to laugh, a time to mourn and a time to dance, a time to scatter stones and a time to gather them, a time to embrace and a time to refrain, a time to search and a time to give up, a time to keep and a time to throw away, a time to tear and a time to mend, a time to be silent and a time to speak, a time to love and a time to hate, a time for war and a time for peace. Ecclesiastes 3:1-8

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Joanne Reese discovered her love for writing in the pages of her journal. Venturing beyond personal muse, Joanne has been published with a local on-line magazine called www.myturlock.com. She has composed several articles for her church's newsletter and has created Bible study curriculum for home groups. She has also contributed to www.avirtuouswoman.org.

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