You Can


“My Child, never forget the things I have taught you.”  Proverbs 3:1a.  



How and when do we grieve?  Should I be down-trodden, wear burlap cloth and remove myself from society for a certain period like some cultures dictate?  And if I am not grief-stricken every moment of the day, is there something wrong with me?  Three of my favorite family members are gone–two in the most recent months. Why am I not crying constantly?  

One of the most insightful answers I heard when I asked this of others is… were probably grieving all along, knowing what was inevitable.  So death, where is thy sting?  Can I apply this to my life or is it only for those who have left us?

I remember one day years after my Dad passed, breaking down with such sorrow.  He was fun-loving with a “can-do” spirit and took on new things with fervor and determination.   My Mom could craft a lovely hand-woven basket or move a struggling plant to a location where it could thrive.. She taught by example, how to care for and cherish the gifts God gave her.  My aunt, afflicted with a disease in her sixties, was almost always upbeat and positive through all her trials.  Each was wise and left me, by example, things that would help me along life’s path.  

“You can” find almost anything on social media–this I don’t need to tell you. At the same time we are barraged by outrageous tragedy, little gems pop up that lift us. This little treasure appeared on my social media page.  It was so heartening we used it in our Mom’s memorial bulletin.

“You can shed tears because they are gone, or you can smile because they lived. 

You can close your eyes and pray they will come back, or you can open your eyes and see all that they left for you.

Your heart can be empty because you can’t see them, or you can be full of the love you shared.

You can turn your back on tomorrow and live for yesterday, or you can be happy for tomorrow because of yesterday

You can remember only that they are gone, or you can cherish their memory and let it live onYou can cry and close your mind and feel empty, or you can do what they would want.  Smile, open your heart, love, and go on.” *

Prayer:  Thank you Father, for those who are no longer with us, but who loved us and left us with a legacy that has shaped us and helped us to grow in ways pleasing to you.  Amen

Sue Healy


*From website  (Author: Elizabeth Ammons)