“Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things.” Philippians 4:8
It was the day before Valentine’s Day and I was standing in front of the Valentine’s cards at my local grocery store. I had gone in to purchase cards for my children and a few other special people. I didn’t realize how difficult it was going to be until I had already committed and was standing there in the card aisle, so I just stood there trying to suck in the emotions. This was the first Valentine’s Day in 21 years that I had not been looking for a Valentine for my sweetheart, David. As I stood there trying to avoid the “husband” and “love of my life” cards out of my right peripheral vision, I felt the tears begin to form in my eyes and that vice on my heart started to squeeze the breath out of me. I mouthed the words, “Jesus, please help me”. I realized that I was just standing there and not even looking at any cards as the lady beside me started reaching in front of me to grab one. I came to myself and apologized for blocking the cards and started to look again for cards for my kids.
Finally, I had chosen just the right card for each person on my list, grabbed some chocolates for them, too, and headed to the line to pay. As I was checking out, I heard someone say my name from behind. It was a sweet couple from my church who I hadn’t seen in months because of what we had been going through. They seemed happy to see me and hugged me and the tears started flowing (mine, not theirs, of course). Here I go, I thought, embarrassed. They asked me how I was doing and instead of being “A Liar” I just told them I was taking it a day at a time and right now I was having a hard time as this was the first Valentines Day in 21 years that I hadn’t had my Valentine to buy a card for. They told me, go ahead and get him a card anyway! You know, I actually thought about that but thought I may be crazy. But after they said that, it did make me smile and I was so glad that they made me feel a little better. I thanked them for the suggestion and told them that I might just do that! Then, another friend came from behind and hugged me and told me that he missed me. I felt loved, even though I was visibly struggling. As the day progressed and I continued to run my errands, I saw more people I knew who reached out and told me how much they loved me and were praying for me and my kids.
That night, Maitlynn (my youngest daughter) and I were sitting in the living room and I started to cry again, missing my sweet husband. Maitlynn said, “Mom, go look on the table in the kitchen”. I walked into the kitchen and there on the table was a dozen red roses, chocolate truffles and the sweetest card from her that said, “Dad wouldn’t want you to not have flowers for Valentine’s Day.” Well, of course I bawled and we hugged. The timing of the gift and card couldn’t have been more perfect.
I love how the Holy Spirit comforts us when things seem unbearable. I love how he puts people in our lives that help us through the most heartbreaking times. There are so many things that I have to be thankful for and it’s really all in how you look at the situation as to whether it is good or bad. We have the choice to see the glass half empty or half full. In this case, I realized that I can continue to focus on the fact that I don’t have my sweetheart for Valentine’s Day anymore or I can focus on the truth of the fact that I had him for 21 years of my life and that he was a wonderful husband and father. I can lean on the truth that he didn’t have an affair and leave me for someone else and that is why I am alone, as some have to endure. He loved me and was faithful to me until his last breath. My children have a legacy of a good, godly father and I will always have fond memories of our marriage. I was blessed with this precious man for over 21 amazing years. How awesome is that?! This is “true, noble, right, pure, lovely and admirable”!
I can’t begin to tell you how blessed I feel at the end of my first Valentine’s Day without David. Have I had moments of sadness? Of course, I have! Have I missed him beyond words? Absolutely! But for the past two days, I have been overwhelmed with love from friends and family and that is what I choose to think on. I’ve been treated to lunch on the 13th by two special ladies who also gave me roses, chocolates and a book by Max Lucado, “You’ll Get Through This.” They spent time encouraging me that God has always taken care of them in their singleness and He would certainly take care of me. I’ve had countless friends message me, stop by my house and bring me special cards and gifts. I’ve had more cards and flowers this year than I have in years. I had lunch with two of my kids and my son in law is treating me and my girls to Mani’s and Pedi’s tomorrow as his gift to all of us. I know that David is up there having the time of his life and he would be so pleased at the love that others have shown me and my kids today. I will choose to “think about these things”.
We can sit and focus on the negative things that happen in our lives, or we can do what Philippians 4:8 tells us and think on the things that are “true, noble, right, pure, lovely, admirable, excellent and praiseworthy.” There were a lot of other things that happened in the past two days that could have sunk me. If I had let my mind dwell on those things, I probably would have just stayed in the bed today and pitied myself. I won’t even tell you about those things because they were just there as a tool of the enemy to bring me to a pit. Personally, I just won’t let him have that satisfaction.
Where are you, today? Have you let yourself dwell on all the things that are negative in your life? Have you curled up in the bed and decided that you didn’t want to face this day because of loneliness, loss or dread? I encourage you to focus on this scripture and make a list of all the things in your life that are blessings. Compare that list to the things that you have let put you in a pit and start climbing out of that pit. Yes, evil will come–negative reports, mistreatment from others, loss of loved ones and more. But, there are certainly enough praiseworthy things in your life and I promise you that when you focus on those things, the others become less overwhelming.
So now I want you to let me know if this blog has helped you. Simply “like” it, if you don’t want to share anything too personal. But, I encourage you to share your Valentine’s Day with my readers and me. Trust me, it helps me as much as it will help you. I struggle, daily, as I walk through the journey I am on, but with the Word of God and special people in my life, I will make it and so will you! Be blessed today!