Have you ever wondered why I would start a website to share my insights and publicly reveal our grief journey? Have you thought maybe I’ve lost my mind? I know I have. Now that I’ve started publishing “Extra Grace Required” I thought maybe some of you might be wondering, too.
I’ve tried to write about why I wanted to develop this website. I’ve tried to share why I would make myself more vulnerable by publicly exposing our grief and our messy life after our loss. I’ve tried to craft words to explain why I would be willing to work full-time at something that doesn’t provide any income. I have never been more certain about my purpose and so I assumed explaining it would be easy.
But then, the words weren’t flowing to explain the why written on my heart. I really wanted you all to know why I’m so confident about what I’m doing, because it’s so important to me that you understand the why. It’s even more important to me that you find encouragement, comfort, entertainment and community here.
After three attempts at drafting the words to tell you my heart, I gave up. Maybe explaining it wasn’t as important or as necessary as I thought? It just wasn’t flowing. Then last week I was listening to Whoa, Susanna (she’s a hoot), and she summarized it beautifully. I really don’t like to borrow ideas from other writers, but this is actually borrowed from God and I’m pretty sure He’s ok with it.
2 Corinthians 1:3-7 (from The Message)
“All praise to the God and Father of our Master, Jesus the Messiah! Father of all mercy! God of all healing counsel! He comes alongside us when we go through hard times, and before you know it, he brings us alongside someone else who is going through hard times so that we can be there for that person just as God was there for us. We have plenty of hard times that come from following the Messiah, but no more so than the good times of his healing comfort – we get a full measure of that, too.
When we suffer for Jesus, it works out for your healing and salvation. If we are treated well, given a helping hand and encouraging word, that also works to your benefit, spurring you on, face forward, unflinching. Your hard times are also our hard times. When we see that you’re just as willing to endure the hard times as to enjoy the good times, we know you’re going to make it, no doubt about it.”
I don’t want you to suffer alone, friends. I’ve been given this crazy hard gift called grief so that I can (hopefully) give you a helping hand and encourage you through your dark times. That’s why I am doing this. I want you to know that through the hardest of hard times, we can’t really trust in our own strength because it’s just not enough. That forces us to fully rely on God, and I hope you do.
I have goals and big dreams for this website. I want to someday be able to scholarship a young widow who maybe didn’t have life insurance or money to sustain her while she got things in order – so she can take a moment to grieve. I want to someday be able to financially support my family with writing and speaking that encourages, entertains and above all else, glorifies God. I have big ideas but we’ll see what God has in mind. I’m going to trust His lead and keep writing and keep trying my best to be what He wants me to be, and do what He wants me to do. I’m probably going to need extra grace. And lots of prayer.
So, that’s the answer to why – because in my heart I know I am supposed to use this unconventional gift called grief to help others while my kids and I continue to learn about God’s love and grace for us. It’s a faith thing. There’s really no eloquent way to explain it other than that. I am trusting God and the calling He’s placed on my heart.
How you can help:
• Pray for me and for this website
• Subscribe to the website at www.extragracerequired.com/subscribe (this is different than catching it on Facebook)
• Share the website as well as individual posts with people who may enjoy it or find it encouraging or comforting
• Share articles on Facebook
• “Like” the Extra Grace Required Facebook page and encourage your circle of friends and family to do so as well
• Leave me comments on Facebook as well as on the website itself
• Let me know what is resonating with you and what is not
• Follow me on Instagram, Pinterest and Twitter (click the icons on the website)
Thank you so much to all of you for joining me on this journey. I can’t wait to see what God has in store for us.