“Are you in pain, Frodo?”
“Well, yes I am,” said Frodo. “It is my shoulder. The wound aches, and the memory of darkness is heavy on me. It was a year ago today.”
“Alas! There are some wounds that cannot be wholly cured,” said Gandalf.
Wednesday marked 25 years since the death of my first husband (KSS). There have been years when the day comes and goes with nary a thought until several days later I would realize, “Oh! It has come and gone!” When those rare times occurred, I was glad because the day was normal and contained no grief. Not so Wednesday.
I felt it was a day of purposeful remembrance so dressed in black and lavender. I felt KSS deserved the mourning attire. It was also a work day. Sadly I received some extended family news which brought a great deal of sadness; to the extent that I could not remain functional at work so spent the remainder of the day quietly at home.
The quiet and solitude was comforting. The time was spent in prayer, not only for myself, for the family member mentioned above. The time was also spent reading more of Blessed Fr. Sophrony’s book St. Silouan. There was comfort to be found in this deep and rich book. A reminder that…
God is Light inaccessible. His being is far superior to any image – not only natural image but mental, too – …
When the created human mind, the created human persona, stand before the Supreme Mind, before the Personal God, it attains to genuinely pure and perfect prayer, but only when from love of God every created thing is set aside is the world forgotten…
I asked Father T. to hold a memorial service for KSS. Two of KSS’ best high school chums came; one brought his wife. Also DS came (KSS is his bio-dad). Hubster was there, of course. And several members of the church choir came to help sing the prayers. The memorial service was a balm to a hurting heart. To hear the hubster’s and DS’s baritone voices join with mine and the choir’s was angelic and peaceful. It was a time to forget the world and its cares in order to enter into the healing that only prayer can bring.
Afterwards, we returned to the house to share a meal and memories. DS hadn’t heard any stories of his bio-Dad’s high school exploits with the two best friends. There was much roaring in laughter and exclamations of “I had forgotten that! We were insane then!” There were moments of complete silence of remembering.
It was one of those days when malediction turned to blessing. Often blessings come that way, you know. They come seemingly as a curse, as a hurt, grief so deep one wonders if a breath will ever be taken without pain. Yet, as it is written in the Book of the Prophet Jeremiah, “Go up to Gilead and take balm.” (Jeremiah 46:11).
That is what prayer and the memorial service offered. Balm to sore hearts. Hearts that were torn in two a long time ago. Hearts that have a deep scar which one constantly rubs their thumb over in remembrance. Applying the balm to the scar eases the pain.
Yes, God is Light. He is far superior to anything. Glory to Him for the blessed day!
There is a balm in Gilead
To make the wounded whole;
There is a balm in Gilead
To heal the sin sick soul.