This summer, July 8-16, I will be going to Scotland with my church on a mission trip. We are partnering with the ministry of 20 Schemes which ministers to the neediest of the people of Scotland (please visit http://www.20schemes.com for details). Since the day I heard of this opportunity I felt a desire to go. After much prayer and counsel, it became clear that the Lord was leading in this direction. Part of the reason I desire to go is in honor of my brother Joe who had a huge impact on my life in so many ways. One of the biggest ways was his love and passion for missions. He went on many mission trips over the years. He had a heart to serve on foreign soil and do whatever he could to help those in need and share the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Even last year, when his body (because of a stroke) was not able to travel overseas, he participated in a local missions endeavor with his church. When he went to be with the Lord last fall, I knew I wanted to carry on his legacy, I just didn’t know what it would look like. I might not have known, but God did. I am humbled that God opened a door for me to serve others via this ministry. In honor of my brother’s example and because the poor in Scotland need the saving Gospel of Christ, I desire to follow the Lord’s leading and to “Go ye into all the World and make disciples of all nations”. Matthew 28:19
I covet your prayers for this trip and if you would like to help financially, please send a tax deductible donation to the following address by July 1st. (Please indicate that your gift is for “Joyce Griffin/20Schemes”):
This Easter season we celebrate our risen Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ. It is indeed a day to celebrate that our savior did not stay in the grave, he rose from the dead and is seated in heaven! How glorious, how wonderful! He redeemed our souls with the price of his own life. That is how much he loved you and I.
I can’t help but think that my dear brother Joe gets to spend his first Easter in heaven.
Oh how grand and glorious that must be for him! These last five months have been the hardest months of my life. Losing a sibling is a grief that goes deep and somehow can never be fully explained. Although I miss him terribly I do rejoice that he gets to spend Easter in heaven, with Jesus! He loved the Lord with his whole heart. And today my friend, during this most precious Easter season I will echo what I know he would say to you, he would want you to choose Jesus as your Savior. Do you know him? Do you love him? The great thing about Jesus is that he is always there waiting for you to choose him. Won’t you do that this Easter season? Choose Christ and LIVE!
I am speaking of the grief that is associated with death. At least that is what I tend to think as I walk through life. But then it happened. To. Me. To. My. Family.
I am finding this kind of grief is so final … so completely final. There will always be a hole in my heart, a missing piece, a void, an empty place. A great pain that fills my heart and makes it ache and that feels it cannot be comforted.
I know and trust that God is sovereign and that his ways are not our ways. I know that my loved one is with Jesus. All the things I know in my head, do not always comfort my heart right now. I cannot make sense of this grief. Its disconnected… its doesn’t make sense… it’s out of order… it’s just very hard.
This morning I came across this verse as I was reading the Bible:
2 Thessalonians 2:16,17
“Now may our Lord Jesus Christ himself, and God our Father, who loved us and gave us eternal comfortand good hopethrough grace,comfort your hearts and establish them in every good work and word.”
He has given us eternal comfort and good hope.
I am choosing to trust God’s word…. even in this time when I just can’t wrap my brain around all this grief.
In the words of the Puritans, “my best prayers are stained with sin; my penitential tears are so much impurity… I need to repent of my repentance; I need my tears to be washed” (The Valley of Vision, 136-137).
Short. Sweet. Truth.