The Room

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image credit: willomailley.com

 

For the last fifty nine days, every day has been the same for me. I didn’t expect day sixty to be any different.

I wake up, look in the mirror and tell myself today is the day. Today will be the day that I can do it. I am stronger than I think I am. I can do this.

I then walk out of my room and go exactly five feet three inches and stop in front of the room. I reach for the door knob then pull my hand away. I stare at the door for what seems like hours but it is only minutes, maybe seconds. I then take a deep breath and walk away.

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image credit: The Sabbath Recorder

 

I go about my day like a robot. Doing without thinking. Lost in my guilt. Lost in the what if’s. Everyone looks at me the same. Fake smiles. I fake smile back. They say everything will be alright. I want to scream at them that it will not be, but I don’t.  I only want to hit something. I have so much anger and hurt and it’s all my fault. They say it is not but I know it is.

I go home. I hesitate as I turn the key to unlock the door. Do I really want to go back inside? I don’t know what else to do so I turn the key.

I make dinner and set two plates out of habit. I know you won’t be joining me. I eat in silence.

I go upstairs to go to bed and I once again stop at the door. I reach for the door knob and pull my hand away. I take a deep breath and walk away. I go into my room and yell at myself in the mirror. Why are you so weak? Why can’t you turn the knob?

God help me! Where are you? I need you. She needs you. Why won’t you make her wake up? I need a miracle.

I fall asleep listening to the hissing and popping of the machines that keep her alive.

I have the same nightmare, but it’s not a nightmare. It’s a reality. You fell down the stairs and couldn’t move. Ten minutes. That’s what the doctor said. If I could’ve gotten you to the hospital ten minutes earlier you would’ve made it. If I would’ve came straight home that night you would’ve been okay.

But I didn’t.

We were fighting and I took the long way home to clear my head.

Ten minutes.

I wish I would’ve driven straight home. That’s why it’s all my fault. That’s why I can’t go in there. I know I did that to you.

I wake with a startle. The house is silent.

It shouldn’t be silent!

The machines have stopped. I jump out of bed and run to the door. I reach my hand out and pull it away. Maybe it’s for the best.

She needs you.

I look around. No one is there.

She needs you. She is still alive. Appreciate the living while they are here. One day she will be gone and you won’t be able to tell her anything.

Tears pour out of my eyes and before I know it my hand turns the door knob. I slowly walk to your bed and reach out to hold your hand. I am so sorry. Please wake up, please. I love you. I need you. I am sorry I haven’t been here. I will always be there for you from now. Wake up!  Please God, wake her up.

I feel her hand squeeze mine. It had to be my imagination. I look up through the tears and see her eyes open.

I didn’t expect day sixty to be any different. God knew it would be.

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He Still Does Miracles by Hawk Nelson – 

Miracles by Alisa Turner – 

God Of The Impossible by Lincoln Brewster – 

Faithful by Sarah Reeves – 

God Who Moves Mountains by Corey Voss –  

Mountain Of Sorrow by The Taylors – 

 

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Your Rose Garden

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I watched you for what seemed like hours as you tended your rose garden. I never understood why you would want to have so many roses and why you would want to spend so much time out there. You would always say you loved the way the dirt smelled. You would spend countless summer days bent over the garden, sweat dripping from your brow, pulling the weeds and pruning the roses. You would come inside sweaty, dirty, and looking exhausted but you always had a smile on your face.

I don’t get it I would say. You would reply, what’s their to get. It’s my time to do what I love and it’s my time I spend all alone with God. You should hear the conversations we would have. I would always reply I don’t know if I want to and we would laugh.

Even in the dark cold days of winter you would get bundled up and go outside to walk the path through your garden. Talking to them, touching their dead branches. Of course, I didn’t get that either. Why on earth? You would always say that they aren’t dead. There is life inside of them. They are like a lot of people in this world. Walking dead but there is life in them. It’s up to us to bring that life out. Waiting patiently, for today they may appear dead but with tomorrow there is always hope.

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You are like that. You had a natural beauty that I was instantly attracted to but it was your inner beauty that would light up my heart. You could walk into a dark room and it would be like someone turned on the lights. It is the type of person you are.

Until one day you were taken from me. A teenager was texting and driving and ran into you. Neither of you survived. God needed his angel back and I had to pay the price. At your funeral the pastor recited your favorite bible verse, Jeremiah 29:11 For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.

Forget you God. If this is your plan then I don’t want any part of it. I looked out the back window and saw your rose garden. In my grief, I ran outside and I pulled and broke and cut every rose bush. I screamed and hollered your name. I screamed at God.

Out of breath, cut, scratched, and bleeding from the thorns, I dropped to my knees and let my tears water the lifeless dirt.

Summer turned to winter and, like the days , my heart grew darker and colder. I didn’t know how to live without you. I didn’t want to live without you. God should’ve taken me with you. My pain was too much to bear.

I looked out the window and saw the bare garden. I finally understood what you meant. Even if they appeared dead, at least they were still there. Now there was nothing but bare dirt. I grieved more as I recalled that day I destroyed what you loved.

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As seasons go, winter turned to spring. We had an early spring this year. I looked out the window and could not believe my eyes. Somehow in the very back of the garden, barely visible from where I stood, a rose bush had survived and now had two roses blooming.

I ran outside as fast as I could. I had to touch them to see if they were real. As I did, I could swear I caught a faint scent of you. Then in the spring breeze I could swear I heard your laughter. I immediately dropped to my knees and grabbed a handful of dirt. It smelled so full of life.

In that moment, I felt my heart start to beat again.

I went out and bought as many rose bushes as I could find. There had to be at least a hundred of them and I was going to fix what I destroyed. I was going to fix your rose garden.

I labored for hours that first day. I went to bed exhausted, sore and smelling like dirt but I would wake up refreshed, ready to start again. I realized I could not do it on my own.

I looked at my phone, hesitant to dial their number. I dialed anyway. I called the teenagers parents and they came over to help. I think all of us healed a little bit that day.

I watched every day as your garden came back to life. I spent hours out there talking to you. I slowly learned to talk to God again.

Summer rolled around and I was still in the garden. Sweat rolling off every inch of my body but it was okay. I stood up to take a break and I swear I felt your hand touch mine. I closed my eyes remembering what your touch felt like. I looked down at my hand but yours was not there. I started to lift it up when a beautiful butterfly landed in my palm. Then a sliver of light fell right on it, giving it its own spotlight. I smiled, then the butterfly fluttered toward my face and touched my cheek, as if giving me a kiss. Then it flew to a nearby rose and I did something I hadn’t done in a long time.

I said your name out loud. Kim?

Then a summer breeze picked up and I swear I heard it carry your laughter. Tears fell down my face but I smiled.

In your rose garden I found life again. I found you again. I found God again.

I miss you every minute of every day but it was right there and then that I knew I would never be alone.

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Maybe Today

 

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There was a time

When I would hit my knees and pray

 

Thanking God you were mine

But that was before He took you away

 

I was upset, no, I was angry

Eyes sewn shut

 

No light could get in

I never thought to look up

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Running in circles

Can’t catch my breath

 

Don’t want to live

I would prefer death

I am out of tears

I scream and shout

 

I don’t want to grab the hand

I can see reaching out

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It never occurred to me

That I was on the wrong side

 

Until through a single crack

Appeared a slither of light

 

A feeling I can’t explain

A weight lifted off my chest

 

I could suddenly breathe again

A time to heal, a time to rest

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All the hurt and pain diminished

Understanding the tears I cried

 

Then a voice, I understand your pain

For my own son died

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Spinning by Disciple- 

Pull The Plug by I Prevail- 

On My Way  by Hayden Panettiere- 

Keep Your Eyes on Me by Tim McGraw and Faith Hill – 

The Wound Is Where The Light Gets In by Jason Gray – 

No Valentine’s Day

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There will be no Valentine’s Day today

For those whose life you took away

I’ve been at a loss on what to say

How could you be so void of love?

Why would you kill those here to protect us?

Prison time for you is just not enough

A 911 call and they went running

They had no idea what was coming

A knock on the door and you started gunning

You have a history of being a crook

Did your multiple times, then off the hook

But that’s no excuse for the lives you took

You’ve left children without a dad

Wives, trying to be strong when they are sad

It breaks my heart, I am more than mad

Your senseless act of violence

Now there is nothing but silence

But I pray they find God in the quietness

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I wish I could say tomorrow they will be alright

I wish I could say tomorrow the sun will shine bright

I just pray they know our love will surround them tonight

So many lives were changed that day

I pray for strength for the families to make it through today

I pray that  God will show them the way

I pray our community will be stronger

I pray that hate will be no longer

I pray we will remember these heroes of honor

They were husbands, fathers, and friends

Someday, maybe someday, our hearts will mend

Tomorrow their brothers will answer the call again

Today, thank a policeman, who willingly puts his/her life on the line

Today, thank all first responders as they do a lot more than just fight crime

Today, pray for the families whose loved ones won’t be coming home this time

We see it all over America, seven times this past week alone a police officer killed in the line of duty. As a reporter said, it feels completely different when it happens in your neighborhood. I will second that. Westerville has a strong police presence. Everywhere I go, it seems like I see a police officer. I tend to take it for granted. I cannot, we cannot, take them for granted anymore.

Thank you for being at our schools, protecting our children.

Thank you for being at the library I visit so often.

Thank you for being at our church, protecting our congregation.

Thank you for patrolling our streets,  protecting our families and our neighbors.

We do not show it enough but know that you are loved, respected, and appreciated.

Thank you for keeping us safe. Thank you for sacrificing your lives everyday. Thank you to your families.

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Heal (Find A Way) by Brian Courtney Wilson- 

Officer Down by Hannah Ellis – 

You Still Put The Uniform On by Holly Cahill- 

Hold The Light by Dierks Bentley – 

Last Call by Dave Bray – 

Even Then by Micah Tyler- 

Shelter by Carrollton-  

Sleeping In The Stars by Tim McGraw and Faith Hill-  

If I Had Only Known by Reba McEntire –  

I Miss You Daddy –  

This Is Going To Hurt

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I ran.

As soon as he took a step towards me, I ran.

I can’t tell you how far or how long I ran.  I am willing to bet my last dollar it was farther and longer than I thought was possible.

I stopped to catch my breath and two questions popped into my head. What did I do for him to be here? Why was he following me?

I started to run again. In between my breaths, I heard the roar of rushing water below. It was in that moment I knew I took the wrong path.

I had three choices. Two of them would surely end in death. I could jump off the cliff into the cold rushing water. Death. I could stand there and do nothing and let him catch me. Death.

Since the first two choices would end in death, I had one choice left.

I had to escape.

Come on, come on.  THINK!! I looked around, evaluating my options. Looking for another way. Time was running out. I could hear him coming.

I threw a rock over the cliff into the water. Hoping he thought I jumped. Then I looked at my only option left. The thickest thorn bush I had ever seen.

This is going to hurt.

I jumped in.

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I tried quieting my breathing. I tried curling up into a small ball. I tried wishing that the moon wasn’t full. But it was.

I heard his footsteps. Getting closer. And closer. How did I get here?

I remember the day it happened. One year ago. One year ago today to be exact. I was in one of my “seasons,” as I like to call them. Nothing was going right. I was sinking into the quicksand I called depression. I was spiraling out of control. Failure was coming and I couldn’t stop it. Shame and guilt knocked on my door and I not only answered, I let them in.

Have you ever done something and one second after you did it you said what did I just do? I am so stupid. Why did I do that? I just let everyone I know down and I know they could never forgive me. I couldn’t even forgive myself so how could they?

I had to keep what I had done a secret. NO MATTER WHAT!! The truth would kill them, therefore killing me. Since I was already dead, there was no need to kill them. So I kept it to myself.

I sank further into my guilt and shame. I withdrew from everyone. Oh, I still had a killer smile and was wittingly charming. I could get by. I faked a lot of happiness. Inside, I cried a lot of tears. I was rotting inside and I knew they could smell it. I knew they knew I was a fake. But they never said anything.

Maybe I was better at hiding it than I thought. Then I started thinking, I am such a good liar. Which led to more guilt and shame. Which led to him.

At first, I didn’t pay much attention. I would see him at the gas station or maybe at the store. You know the feeling you get when you think someone is watching you. I would get that and look up and he would be looking at me. He wouldn’t look away. I got chills down my spine. What a creep, I thought.

Through the first few months, I would seem him every couple of weeks. As the year progressed, I would see him more and more. Recently, as I was falling apart and my lies were catching up to me, as my guilt and shame were eating at me, I was seeing him every day.

EVERY SINGLE DAY!!

ALWAYS LOOKING AT ME.

NEVER LOOKING AWAY.

I finally was getting the courage to approach him and ask him what his deal is. That’s when he took the first step to me. I froze. Then, I ran.

I ran and here I am. In this thorn bush. Scratched and bleeding. Dying inside. Hiding from a man who wouldn’t quit following me.

As smart as I thought I was by throwing the rock into the water, he was smarter. As quiet as I thought I was being, he could still hear me. As dark as I thought my hiding place was, he still found me.

I, for the first time, took a good look at him. I mean, a really good look. I wanted to know who was going to end my days. That’s when I saw the crown of thorns around his head. He didn’t say a word. He just reached his hand down and by the light of the moon, I saw the scars on his. A sudden peace came over me and for some unknown reason, I reached out and took his hand.

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The thorns parted as he pulled me up. My bleeding wounds stopped bleeding. It was like a giant boulder was taken off my shoulders.

“I forgive you.” In those three words that he said my heart changed. It was like clean air was poured into my dirty lungs. Tears of guilt were replaced with tears of joy.

I walked back home, with him by my side. I knew it may be a long road to recovery, but I knew I had to tell them. I knew they had to know the truth. I could not keep living with this.

I also knew with him there was no condemnation, no guilt, no shame. I had to believe that they would forgive me also. I had to hope and pray for a better future. No matter what happens, I knew I had to continue to walk with him, not run away from him.

I took a deep breath and walked into the house. I knew we would be okay. I knew that I would be a better man. I knew they would forgive me. I knew we would survive the lies. Even so, I knew this was going to hurt.

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Never Stopped Loving by Jeremy Camp- 

Grace Will Lead Me Home by David Dunn – 

Fear Is A Liar by Zach Williams – 

He Still Does Miracles by Hawk Nelson – 

Worth It by Lecrae- 

You Waited by Travis Greene- 

Always Faithful by Ashes Remain – 

Thunder In My Heart

 

There is thunder in my heart

This is gonna leave a scar

There is lightning in my veins

Your lies drive me insane


 

My heart is turning to stone

I shake my head, I should’ve known

My blood is turning to ice

No more playing nice

You thought I would never leave

Your words I no longer believe

You thought you could use me and abuse

You ask me how can I accuse?

I’ve got proof I read your texts

You ask me to stay, there won’t be a next

I  read all  your email

You’ve already lost, you fail


 

Thunder rolled, a voice rumbled

A step back. I started to stumble

Electricity in the air

His words were there

“LET HER GO, GIVE HER TO ME”

The voice rumbled,  “JUST BELIEVE”

“I’m done,” said my heart of stone

I yelled back, “I’m better being alone”

“You are never alone,” the voice said

“I was  on the cross, For this I bled”

The thunder in my heart started to slow

The lightning in my veins  stopped its flow


 

God worked a miracle

The invisible became visible

He did something I couldn’t do

He can do the same for you

If there is thunder in your heart

You know where to start

If there is lightning in your veins

Through it all God’s love remains

 

 

 

Storm In My Heart by Colin Hay – 

My Darkest Hour by Thunder – 

Thunder Rolls by Garth Brooks – 

Fall Apart by Every Avenue – 

I Don’t Care by Apocalyptica – 

Breaking Me Down by Escape The Fate – 

Breakin Free by Tesla – 

In It For Life by Sick Puppies – 

Prophet Song/ God Speaks by Martin Smith – 

Fall On Your Knees by David Crowder Band – 

Need You Now by Plumb – 

Head In The Fight by Sanctus Real – 

Don’t Cry Forever by Pillar – 

Broken Together by Casting Crowns – 

Thunder Road by NewSong – 

The Sun Doesn’t Always Come Out Tomorrow

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Feeling lost at school and feeling ignored at home

Surrounded by people but feeling all alone

I think I’m tired of fighting the fight

I’m ready to leave this life tonight

There’s nothing here as far as I can see

I wonder if anyone will even miss me

Meanwhile two blocks away

Stacy winds up another day

She remembers him and when they were so close

But lately he seems distant,  disappeared like a ghost

I’ll call him tomorrow to just say hi

She doesn’t know he’s ending his life tonight

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Meanwhile two rooms away his parents talk

About how they might go take a walk

Should they go back to his room

They joke how it seems like a tomb

They remember how he laughed not long ago

Would they have tried harder if they had known?

Meanwhile two key strokes away

More of the kids in school type away

Making jokes and calling him names

Doesn’t he know he’s so lame

They wish he would go away and die

Tomorrow they will cry and wonder why

He thinks of how his life will end

Too many torn pieces to try to mend

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His phone rings “hey how are you doing”

It’s Stacy asking how things are going

I was going to call you tomorrow but why wait

She didn’t  know that tomorrow would’ve been one day too late

A knock on his door and mom says let’s leave

We are all going to go get some ice cream

No ifs ands or buts, you’re going

If they only knew what he thought of doing

His screen beeps and Scott starts to fight

What you guys say is wrong, it isn’t right

How about saying something positive

And he starts to think he might want to live

He gets off his bed and starts to head out the door

That’s when his bible fell onto the floor

A verse about you will have pain, suffering and sorrow

Then the Air1 verse of the day says hope in tomorrow

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Then his youth pastor sent a text to see if he was okay

He sent back looks like I’ll make it through another day

Is there someone that you know

That thinks the sun won’t come up tomorrow

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One Day Too Late by Skillet  – 

I Can’t Breathe by Bea Miller – 

The Call by Matt Kennon – 

Beautiful by MercyMe – 

Hard Love by NeedToBreathe- 

Hope by Ryan Calhoun – 

My Friends by Oh Wonder – 

Hope by Superchick-  

Hope For The Hopeless by Papa Roach – 

Remain by Royal Tailor – 

Not Today by Hillsong United – 

Be Still And Know by Hannah Kerr – 

How Do You Get That Lonely by Blaine Larsen – 

Storm Inside Of You by Veronica Ballestrini- 

I Want To Live by Skillet – 

Broken by Lifehouse –