Saturday, March 16, 2013

Editor's Reflections on the Journey: There's No Place Like Home

When people share their fears about what they are going through in the grief process, a major theme is the very real fear that the way they feel today could somehow, possibly, be the way they will feel forever. No matter what day it is in their journey they wonder; how could they possibly live the rest of their life in black and white, when everyone else is seeing color?
One of the visual metaphors I like to use for this feeling is from the classic movie, "The Wizard of Oz".  Dorothy and Toto are spinning helplessly on her bed in the middle of the tornado. Debris is whirling around them. It is dark and black and they could possibly die.  Dorothy sees images of all of her loved ones flash before her eyes.  Then.... miraculously, the tornado moves on and the house and the bed come down to earth with a resounding thud.  Dorothy, ever so carefully,  cautiously, and fearfully, opens the door of her house and sees the glorious, bold, bright, and almost blinding color of Oz.  She has left the sepia tones of Kansas, the black and dark tones of the tornado, and she is suddenly bathed in beautiful sunlight and color.

Smithsonian Institution Display 
The grief journey is like that. Perhaps not so abrupt or sudden, but there will be a day when you look outside and notice again that the trees are a beautiful shade of green. You will feel the sun is warm and glowing and yellow, and that your life includes hope and joy again.  Slowly, surely, and persistently, you will notice color and hope, and you will be able to say, ”Wow, I think I’ve survived the tornado”.
But the change is not because of the Wizard, but because of the true healing of God. He wants YOU to live the rest of your life in bold and brilliant color, even though you have been through a tornado.
Dorothy says, “There’s no place like home”, and you will find that there is no place like the home ....of God.

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