2013 coming to a close……

Lizz and boys superheroesI wanted to do a final post in 2013 to reflect on this blog.  I created this blog for several reasons…..one was to publicly journal my grief to give hope to others that walk this path and know they are not alone.  Second was to historically remember and honor my daughter and grandsons long past my time here on earth.  Third is to share some of my private memories about my daughter and how I continue to honor my relationship with her and be a grandparent to three boys that live in heaven.  Last, but most importantly, was to give witness and glory to my Lord and Savior through all of this…….

I started this blog in January 2013 as part of my 2013 grief journey resolutions.  In summary, this is my 76th blog post.  In one year, there were 25,370 views.  Many followers left amazing and encouraging comments…..166 to be exact.

The most viewed postings were on July 30, 2013, Elizabeth’s 1st anniversary of her homegoing where I put down my memories and thoughts of that day with 820 visitors who visited www.elizabethherrodowdy.com and viewed 1,961 items on her blog!

So, as I look toward the beginning of 2014, I work on continued healing with my grief.  I raise my hands on this day and everyday and give honor and glory to my Lord and Savior.  I am convinced more than ever that my God is the same God that I believed in on July 29, 2012.  I have also determined that I do not want to waste a drop of this grief if it can further his kingdom and bring glory to him!  I have also learned that even in the most immense pain and suffering it is not wasted.  I cling to 2 Corinthians 4:16-18:

“So we do not lose heart. Though our outer self is wasting away, our inner self is being renewed day by day. For this light momentary affliction is preparing for us an eternal weight of glory beyond all comparison, as we look not to the things that are seen but to the things that are unseen. For the things that are seen are transient, but the things that are unseen are eternal.”

I thank you all for supporting me across the country and world (yes, I have hits from countries all over the world!) and I hope I have met some of my objectives for this blog……I pray with every blog posting it brings honor to my daughter and my Lord.  I hope that other bereaved parents that follow my blog are encouraged.  “May these words of my mouth and this meditation of my heart be pleasing in your sight, Lord, my Rock and my Redeemer.”  Psalm 19:14

I leave 2013 with a song by Shane and Shane titled “Though you slay me” which is based on Job 13:15:  “Though he slay me, yet will I trust in him: but I will maintain mine own ways before him”.  This song has touched my heart immensely.  The voice in the song is John Piper.  His writings on suffering and pain has changed my view on this topic and helped with my journey.  If you are struggling, I encourage you to listen and may it encourage and bless you…..

Therefore, my suffering is meaningful when I am obedient……it is doing something….don’t look at what is seen…….focus on the things that are unseen and eternal.  Scripture tells me it is working for me an eternal glory and therefore I do not lose heart!

Day by day, I will focus on them until my heart sings!  I am hopeful as I enter 2014 to see what God will do as he continues to bring beauty from the ashes.

Julie

4 thoughts on “2013 coming to a close……

  1. Julie…what beauty and faith! God is using you and this tragedy for His glory because you are allowing Him to do that through your life. Keep the faith and stay strong. I am proud to call you friend and to have been even a slight part of Elizabeth’s childhood. My memories too are of her infectious smile. May God continue to bring you peace in this storm and raise you up to new heights in your walk with our amazing Lord!! In His Love, Ruby

  2. Amen – Loved what you wrote, and also the Shane and Shane song. I am a Piper fan, so it meant all that much more. How comforting to know that not ONE bit of suffering that we endure in this life is in vain. I wish you a blessed 2014, as we daily trust in Him. Brad

    Date: Tue, 31 Dec 2013 15:37:58 +0000 To: befleagle@hotmail.com

  3. Julie, you are such a strong, God loving lady. Your words are so inspirational. I know that you do trust in your Lord. Please remember to take care of you.
    Happy New Year dear lady.
    Gina

  4. Julie, It has been a blessing to see how you and God have walked this path together. Knowing how painful this has been – your life has served (and is serving) as a testament to the healing and redeeming power of God. Through all this you’ve kept your eyes squarely focused on God – and recognized that He did not “do this to you,” He did not forsake you, and He did not abandon you. I appreciate that even in the midst of all your grieving, you used your own pain as a mirror to redirect your readers’ eyes to God – and in the process given us all hope. Hope that through whatever trials we may face (or are right now facing) – God’s grace is indeed sufficient. Thank you for opening up your life during this Winter season in your life so that we may see God’s handiwork. May 2014 bring continued healing and perhaps even some glimpses of a beautiful Spring to follow this harsh Winter. And may God continue to use you in powerful ways to encourage us all and bring glory to His name.

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