Hello There! We have been gone a while, turns out we had to completely rebuild our website and we’ve had a few bumps in the road. That paired with the busy-ness of summer it has been a long time since we’ve had a post. Thank you for your patience. Continuing on with our posts from the board members today’s post is written by our director Lenette. David’s Hope was her idea, and God has used her immensely in this ministry.
For Christians the historical account of the empty tomb is foundational to all our hope. Our faith is dependent on it. It represents new life, hope, healing, and victory over death. You can read about it in any of the four gospels: Matthew, Mark, Luke, or John. Gospel means good news, and victory over death is good news indeed.
My personal story is about a different empty grave, one in my own back yard. In 2008 we lost our son Esaias in miscarriage. There are no words to describe the shock and confusion that comes from the words, “We can’t find the heartbeat.”
Sadly, in times of profound grief it is easy to add insult to injury. The night Esaias was born we were sent home to “make room for a live birth.” As we delivered our son at home alone and held him and looked at his beautiful body, we had to ask why someone so perfect would be denied life. When we called our attendant to learn what we needed to do to lay him to rest we were told to “get a shoe box and make a flower garden”. I was devastated. No birth certificate, no death certificate, no paper trail to his existence, and no dignity in his death. I remember bursting into tears and crying that we were not talking about a beloved pet, but rather my son! How could someone be so cavalier about his remains?
My husband and I ended up buying a beautiful jewelry box, potpourri, fabric for a blanket and a stuffed animal for Esaias. Then we lovely laid him to rest with a small family service in a flower garden for him. Eighteen months later his brother, Eleazar, would be buried beside him.
I want you to know, I loved that garden. I was protective of that garden. When we dug the graves they were fearfully dug. They were dug very deep to make sure that they were never disturbed or desecrated. They were dug deep as we searched deep within ourselves the plaguing question “why?”
Fast forward 2017, the house that Randy and I had lived in for 19 years was now going on the market. While it was exciting, a dread began to overcome me. What about my babies? What if we had not laid them to rest deep enough? What if the graves are desecrated? Fear began to enter into my heart, a place it did not belong. I began grasping at straws on how to save them. Looking us things like, “looking up why they moved Joseph’s bones”. I wanted to move our sons to our new house. I wanted them safe with us. I even ran the idea by a select few and felt like they had given me confirmation that I was making the right choice.
The last night in our home, I sent my husband and kids away. It was time. As I dug, I began to cry. I began to pray. I thought to myself, “Is this crazy? Why is this so painful? Where was this fear coming from?”
I dug for a long time. I dug very deep. It was not a small jewelry box, and I knew exactly where each son was buried. Their graves had been clearly and intentionally marked. But… I simply could not find them.
Finally, when I was almost waist deep in the hole, a wave of peace came over me. I began crying again. Look at the size of that hole! Look at how deep my hurt was! Look at how much anger there must have been to dig so deep… And now, I could not dig deep enough. I could not find them.
But why was I looking anyway? All that I would find would be wood and dust. My children would not be there. My hope is in an empty tomb from 2,000 years ago- my hope is in the resurrection. And my hope is in the fact that I will see my sons in heaven some day! I had let fear cause me to search after wood and dust, instead of relying on my faith giving me hope.
As I began to refill the hole, I was left in amazement of the healing God had provided me. When I looked at what the size of the hole represented, I was amazed at what God had healed me of. Filling in the hole showed me how much God had made me whole. It also showed me his faithfulness in my life. I really should have never been out digging, trying to find my sons again- but in God’s mercy and grace, I was able to see how far He has carried me. I want you to know- this is the same desire He has for your life too. He is the Great Healer, and He will heal our broken hearts- if we turn to Him in faith, and trust Him with our pain.