The Empty Chair

emptychair

For my dear friends who are grieving the loss or the absence of a loved one this Christmas…

The Empty Chair

“The Empty Chair” sits vacant at every home this Christmas.
It sat there all alone in my house and it sits all alone in yours.
The difficult part about dealing with “The Empty Chair” is that it used to be filled…
Filled to overflowing perhaps…
Filled with sounds of laughter…
Filled with striking smiles and twinkling eyes…
Lips that curled a certain way right before busting out laughing and even crying…
Eyes that narrowed in keen observation, eyes that softened and moistened upon saying “good-bye”…
Eyes that lit up with a joy uncontainable upon seeing your face…

The Empty Chair used to be filled..
Filled with hands that you used to hold and stroke and hands that used to hold yours…
Hands that had wedding rings and diamond rings and mood rings and turquoise rings…
Hands that had dug in the dirt, changed the oil, baked the birthday cakes and
Hands that you just knew you would hold forever and ever…

The Empty Chair used to be filled…
Filled with a voice that was so unique you could pick it out as “that” one and only voice in a crowded mall.
The voice that made your heart sing every time that voice uttered your most precious name…
The voice that read you bedtime stories, Bible stories and the “funnies” on Sunday morning…
The voice that would command, direct, whisper and shout.

The Empty Chair used to be filled…
Filled with someone you loved or still love…
They are no longer at the table
Not necessarily because they don’t want to be..
They may just not be able…

The Empty Chair they used to fill is empty because…
They have passed away, never again to see you another day…
They have ventured off to another land, promising to one day return and hold your hand…
They are imprisoned either literally or figuratively which by either case hurts none the less…
They are hurt beyond compare and the only way they know to respond is to hurt you back by filling the empty chair with just “air.”
They might be on vacation and will return next year to fill The Empty Chair.

The Empty Chair used to be filled by…
Our husband, our wife, our granddad, our grandmother, our mother, our father, our son, our daughter, our significant other, our friend, our uncle or aunt, our brother or sister…

It is always this time of the year that The Empty Chair makes the loudest noise.
It’s Christmas and we celebrate with all the smiles and with all the joys.
And yet, The Empty Chair is not a seasonal chair…
It sits empty all year long right in front of you, right there.

It is with sadness and it is with glee that we celebrate and tolerate The Empty Chair.
The Empty Chair is a blessed curse,
Some days are better and some days are worse.
Our memories of those who once filled The Empty Chair fill our heart
Do not let the memories evaporate would be a good place to start.
Instead, take one step or more
And walk across the dining room or living room floor
And sit, sit tall or sink right in The Empty Chair
And absorb the spirit of the one who is no longer here and no longer there
And praise God above for the love you are able with family and friends to share
Because, one day your spirit will be all that is left to fill The Empty Chair…

 

I’m Spending Christmas with Jesus Christ this Year

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I have a number of friends who will be spending this Christmas without the physical presence of a loved one. The loss of a loved one over the last year is magnified during the special holiday season.

For my dear friends who find themselves in this position, I offer you my heartfelt prayers of peace, comfort and joyful remembrances of the one you loved so much, who in turn loved you just as much…

I came across this poem today at a funeral for a colleague of mine…

“I’m Spending Christmas with Jesus Christ this Year” by Wanda Becker
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I got you…

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Her name is Denise. She’s 27 years old.
His name is Dennis. He’s 45 years old.
They sat next to each other at a training event.
They laughed at the large clock on the wall. It wasn’t moving fast enough!

Five minutes later the shooting began.
Dennis and Denise dropped to the floor in tandem, in concert, in a flash.
Dennis wrapped his arms around Denise. Used his body as a shield to protect his table mate.
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The Day After…


I have seen it hundreds of times.
Maybe you have too.
It’s the most difficult day of days.
All the preparation and prayer in the world cannot prepare you.
It didn’t help me…
It probably didn’t help you.
It didn’t help Mary or Peter or the disciple that Jesus loved – John.
They watched Jesus be hailed as the Prince of Peace as he made his triumphal entry into Jerusalem just six days ago on Palm Sunday.
They watched him dismantle the money changers in the temple.
They ate with him around the table at supper on Thursday night.
They all had their feet softly and gently and lovingly washed on Thursday night.
They all saw him troubled as he prayed with such heartache in the garden.
They all saw him get arrested.
After that…they scattered…
And now, Jesus is dead.
His tortured, pierced, bloodied body has been laid to rest in a tomb.
And now the question that faced his mother, his family, his friends and his disciples faces us.

What do we do when our loved one has died and it is now “The Day After.”

SeeingGodatWorkEveryday…

Below is what the scriptures have to offer us on what the disciples and Jesus’ family did on Saturday, the day after…

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That’s right…
Nothing.

I hope we have better news tomorrow…
The day after the day after…

SeeingGodatWorkEveryday…
Laugh often and Fear not!
David!

David@seeinggodatworkeveryday.com