Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 - Advanced)
Topic: ANNOYED (04/05/18)
By Michelle Gretz
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She stopped for a nanosecond and answered, “Oh, yes. However, that came later.” Then she continued reminiscing about the better years as though the latter years never occurred. I felt sick.
My last memory of him visiting us included me begging my parents for a lock on my bedroom door. They finally put a hook and eye on the door, but I was half awake every night. Then I came home from school to find him drunk in our dining room, and I was ordered to go to the neighbor’s house and wait. Later I found out he had a gun and was threatening my mom with it. Grandpa was a man that enjoyed striking terror into the hearts and minds of his family. He relished creative forms of punishment and enjoyed seeing fear and pain in their tender eyes. For my mother’s sake, I tried to hide my personal feelings thinking that is what supportive daughters are supposed to do with grieving mothers.
A few years later my grandma died. She too had ways of making family members miserable. I remember her constant smoking and not being allowed to roll down the car windows. She didn’t care how much I coughed or cried. Later she tried to introduce me to alcohol and to be more like her and her husband. She despised my choice to walk with Jesus over joining her and her walk of life. I recall overhearing her tell a relative one thing and another something different. She got a big kick out of watching them bicker among themselves.
Nevertheless, when she died, my mom went into an even more severe emotional spiral. With both her dad and mom passing away she felt unloved like an orphan. The truth is she must have felt unloved by them before they died. I know I did. However, their actual passing seemed to bring these long-held feelings to the surface of her heart and mind. The tearful grief repeated itself over and over again
One day instead of feeling compassion, I felt annoyed. Here was an opportunity for a mother and daughter to enjoy each other’s company, and it was passing us by. She was oblivious to the loss occurring right in front of her. The expression blind with grief is a real condition. On and on she went speaking lovingly and positively of these two people whose lives were so completely engulfed by their sin. Suddenly I was aware of a jealous surge rising up within me. How could she love the dead so much and the living so little?
As I thought about my mom’s behavior, an unexpected pricking sensation occurred. Isn’t this what I do also? Haven’t I learned from her to rehash hurts and losses over and over again? Haven’t I annoyed my Heavenly Father and my Redeemer? They are so full of life and are ever with me. Hasn’t my deep love for others moved them to jealousy at times? My heart yielded an honest “Yes, indeed.”
“Lord, Jesus, forgive me. Forgive me for overly grieving anything and everyone that is dead to Thee. The loss of ungodly relationships, possessions, health, careers; all these things are nothing to Thee and will be no more. Never again do I want to grieve in this way. Thank you for showing me, myself. I also thank you for revealing that continual grief for another is not required as proof of love. Instead, it is a spiritual sickness and serves no purpose. King David struggled with such grief over his son, Absalom. His grief annoyed his staff and injured his relationship with God’s people. Oh, Lord, raise me up out of such unprofitable misery to walk in newness of life. Amen.”
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