Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Our Healing Journey; Joseph's Lessons

“You are my beloved son, with you I am well pleased.” -Mark 1:11
"God has created me to do Him some definite service. He has committed some work to me which He has not committed to another. I have my mission…  I shall be an angel of peace, a preacher of truth in my own place…  Therefore I will trust in Him... Whatever, wherever I am... If I am in sickness, my sickness may serve Him; in perplexity, my perplexity may serve Him; if I am in sorrow, my sorrow may serve Him. He does nothing in vain....”- Cardinal Newman (paraphrased)
 “Time heals all wounds. And if it doesn't, you name them something other than wounds and agree to let them stay.” ― Emma Forrest
 “As soon as healing takes place, go out and heal somebody else.”  -Maya Angelo
“Where there is great love, there are always miracles” -Mother Theresa

 “Ever had your feet taken out from under you? Have you ever had the wind taken from your lungs? Ever had to forgive, when you want to stay angry? Had to go on when you want to give up?...   Let Me heal you, let Me heal you. Let me hide you underneath my wings. You were made for such a higher love, let me tell you who you are to Me. Let Me love you, let Me love you. This world is just a passing dream, don’t let it tell you who you are, let Me tell you who you are to Me.
Have you ever had to stand right before the altar knowing that your dreams were the sacrifice? Have you ever felt the pain of the crucifixion, and only had the hope that it leads to life?...   He says, let Me heal you, let Me heal you … Let Me love you.” These words, from the Erik Christensen Band song "Ever had to forgive?," adequately sum up our healing journey and the past six months better than I can put into words myself. Our healing is only one that can be done through the Lord and understood in light of eternity. We rejoice knowing that our son is in Heaven and will be with us again so very soon. We are at peace knowing our loss, our suffering, has served a greater purpose. Our healing comes from the peace that can only be found in Christ’s love. I am letting Him heal me, I could never do it on my own, and the journey has just begun.

It is hard to believe it has been six months since Joseph Angelo was with us. So much has happened since then. I know I am not the person I was seven months ago.  Joseph taught me more about life, loss, acceptance and unconditional love than I could have ever imagined. His brief life is a beautiful gift and one of my greatest blessings.  As we continue our daily lives, I struggle between “moving on,” and “holding on” for dear life. I want to remember every detail. Joseph will always be with me as will be my scars. Now when I see my C-section scar I no longer see a wound, I see healing, healing that will always be a part of me, and can only be done by God alone.

Throughout the past six months there have been dark nights and stormy days however there have been many miracles and rainbows as well. Through the storms, we experience and appreciate the hope and the beauty of the rainbows even more (more on this to come another day). On the difficult days, when we miss our son the most, I find peace in remembering the lessons I have learned through him. I hope to share some of these lessons with you so that Joseph Angelo’s message and his memory continue to live on and touch your lives.


Joseph Angelo’s Messages;

Life Lessons Learned in

Just One Hour

ALL life is sacred.

ALL life is precious.

ALL life is a gift.

Choose life.

Make a decision every day to celebrate life.

Treasure every moment.

Take nothing for granted.

Hug your children (and those close to you) just a little tighter.

Be not afraid.

Let go and let God.

Pray… and accept God’s will.

You don’t know what you don’t know.

We are far less in control than we’ve deceived ourselves to think we are.

God has a plan and a mission for each of us.

“If you want to make God laugh, tell Him your plans.”

Practice acceptance.

The world can be completely changed in just a moment.

Live each hour, don’t waste a minute.

Don’t underestimate the power, impact and influence a brief interaction can have on others. It can change lives.

“Life is 10% what happens to you and 90% how you react to it.”

Believe in miracles.

“You can live your life as though nothing is a miracle or you can live your life as though everything is a miracle.”

There are angels (God’s messengers) everywhere.

There is redemptive love in suffering.

Suffering is a gift, tough times, challenges and struggles make us who we are and who we are meant to be.

“Sometimes we must experience times of personal darkness to
see Christ’s light shine through.”

Courage in the tough times defines us.

Ask if you need it and accept help graciously.

“Joy shared is doubled, sorrow shared is halved.”

Choose a spouse who shares your values, dreams, joys and what’s important to you, life’s challenges aren’t as bad with your best friend by your side.

Rainbows provide hope in the storm, they don’t take away the storm, but their beauty is appreciated even more because of it.

Be grateful.

Love unconditionally.

Stand strong in what you believe.  Let others think what they will.

Heaven is for real and forever, our time here is fleeting and brief.

Heaven is the ultimate goal.

Be not afraid (in case you didn’t get it the first time).

Today is a gift, live and love to the fullest! Enjoy it!