Joy & Grief & Love & Life all mixed together: for Shirley

For your Maker is your husband,    the Lord of hosts is his name... Isaiah 54:5

Father of the fatherless and protector of widows    is God in his holy habitation. Psalm 68:5

Don & Shirley
Don & Shirley

My dear friend,

I heard a song as I was walking this morning...and I thought of you!

I remembered a poem from days gone by...and I thought of you!

And I thought of grief and joy and love and life...and I thought of you, my precious sister-friend!

And I remembered your delightful, "crusty," out-spoken husband Don, who is now "exploring the mysteries of Christ."

Most of all, I remembered Jesus who has experienced grief and joy and love and life...all of it, so He knows!

So for you my darling Shirley (and for those you love and who love you and your Don) as you face the loss of your dear husband:

Grief Joy Love Life

And so first the poem:

Life, Paul Dunbar
Life, Paul Dunbar

Life Paul Laurence Dunbar

A crust of bread and a corner to sleep in, A minute to smile and an hour to weep in, A pint of joy to a peck of trouble, And never a laugh but the moans come double; And that is life!

A crust and a corner that love makes precious, With a smile to warm and the tears to refresh us; And joy seems sweeter when cares come after, And a moan is the finest of foils for laughter; And that is life!

And then the song:

God Is Love

All we hold is frail and briefPatched together by beliefThe pattern only partiallyRevealed for us to seeWhat are tears but seeds we sow?In fields unseen such harvest growWhose joys will one day overflowThe measure of our grief

REFRAINIf God is loveThen love we trustIs strong enough to hold our sorrowIf God is loveHe carries us We will not fear what comes tomorrowLove will heal usFor God is love

Then suffering's no enemyAnd poverty, no povertyAnd death our greatest victoryWhen swallowed up in life


Though sorrow surge at every stepYet goodness is assuredFor none that harms or troubles hereWill speak the final wordLove speaks the final word


Don & Shirley & Jim D & me
Don & Shirley & Jim D & me