kristen1Accept… I have a beautiful friend who accepted a gift from God that most of us would not see as a gift. To be honest I fought accepting it and thrashed about on her behalf. Instead of resignation to a life threatening illness, or anger, or helplessness, or passiveness my friend’s acceptance of cancer in her life as a gift became a catalyst for much joy, and fullness in life. She and her family by accepting it, were able to follow God into the unknown territory of starting a not for profit for other families with a terminally ill parent.  They do retreats that are tremendous gifts for these families along with a website with amazing resources and connections to help the family create a deep and meaningful legacy.

My sweet friend took God at His word, she adopted James 1:2-4 as her verse: “Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, a whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.” God was deeply faithful to meet her challenge and gave her great joy as she persevered. She lived her life fully and with intention.

She accepted the time constraint of her life and all the hard that went along with it for her and her family and invited the rest of us to journey with them. Even to this day, her legacy to accept what God had with open hands and look for the gifts to receive and give continues to give to many people including me. With acceptance came joy for her. We were blessed with extra days with her where she welcomed all in and reminded us of how beautiful life is and how good our God is even in the hard.

I still struggle with accepting the deep truth of  James 1:2-4… it seems contradictory, but then I reflect back on my dear friend’s journey and know that God is faithful with His children who take His hand and trust Him even if He walks them through the valley of the shadow of death. That is something I accept as I have seen this over and over in my friend’s life and in my own.

***Today is the 7th anniversary of my sweet friend’s homecoming. At her funeral in her fashion of always thinking of others, she had written us a letter. The link is below. May you be encouraged that although life is super hard, that anything that filters through God’s hand is for His glory and our good.


* I am joining Five Minute Fridays in a 31 day Writing Challenge. Each day I will be writing on a different word prompt for at least 5 minutes for the month of October.

**Check out 2018’s 31 Day Writing Challenge


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