Good morning friends, how are you today … just today? Today, I am fine. I do have quite a bit to do today, but that’s good, I like to be busy. As a matter of fact, sometimes I have to be aware of that desire; that need, to be busy. It’s not always the wisest decision, even though it may be the easiest in my case. What does your day look like? It is raining AGAIN in my neck of the woods. It has been raining for the past week, every single day. My poor, indoor, plants are having a hard time, flourishing during these dark, gloomy, rainy days. Although, they sit near the windows, even the daylight has been almost, none existent. But for me, the rain is welcome here, because it means our temperature is warm enough to have no need for mittens, scarves, hats, snow jackets and snow boots and there is no need to use the snow blower to clear the driveway. It could always be worse, can’t it? Although I would like to have the sunshine and even warmer temperatures, I do thank the Lord for the rain today. Last week, I heard one of the most profound statements, ever to come into my hearing. And then I heard it AGAIN in our Ladies Sunday School Class. Needless to say, I had to stop and take note; I had to ask the Lord what He needed me to know. In our News Broadcast, during the Sports segment, a young man with Down syndrome was being acknowledged. He has been selected by his football team as the best player. Of course, my heart melted, they are special people, indeed. But what really struck me was what his mom said, during that interview. She said, she had to grieve the loss of the child she wanted, in order to accept the child she was given. “Huh!” I thought to myself. That was an unusual statement. Don’t you think so, too? But then, I heard it again, during our SS class. We began a new book entitled, ‘Maintaining Balance in a Stress-Filled World’ by Midge DeSart (a very good book and so necessary in today’s world). In the first chapter, she talks about acknowledging and taking the time to grieve our losses. Usually, when I think about ‘losses’, death comes to mind, but the idea here is that sometimes, in our desire for perfection and/or control, or even sometimes for seemingly ‘good reasons’, we have the tendency to ‘bottle things up’. Well, we all know what will eventually happen to any bottle, when it has had enough. But, I never thought about it, with the idea of ‘grieving’. How absolutely profound! Well, it is for me. Most of you know by now, that we sent our last child to college in August. We are now empty nesters. I don’t think I realized how much I dreaded becoming an empty nester. Truthfully, I must admit, I don’t know how to feel about it. The house can be really quiet, perhaps too quiet and too clean. We’ve homeschooled for years, this last child never went to school and she was a restless one, to put it mildly. There was always running and talking, with me trying to put order. They were ALWAYS TALKING during their school work, which always made us go over time, which always frustrated me. There was swimming and Taekwondo and Awana and friends; but now we have quiet. It does have its moments though; I find myself talking out loud to the Lord more, playing my music louder, de-cluttering and organizing our home, which is wonderful. But I realize now, I did not take the time to ‘grieve my losses’. Our home may never be our girls’ home again; after college, they may choose to stay in a new city. They are not our ‘little’ girls anymore. They are 18 and 20 years now. We were called by the Lord, to raise them to be godly young women and we’ve done that. My work is done in the mothering department, as least, as far as I know. Right now, they will spend more time with each other and away from us, than they will actually spend with us. This is my new normal. They now get the opportunities to put into practice what they’ve been taught, without us to cushion the fall. They will make decisions that will affect the rest of their lives, prayerfully, they will choose well. Thank You, Lord, for the time You granted us with the girls. Thank You, Lord, that although You are right here with us, You are also with them. Thank You for being my Father and for caring about my broken heart. Thank You. Thank You so much for the opportunities, You have given to the girls. Thank You, Lord and now be God in my life. What are some ‘losses’ you may have to grieve?