While The Clock Is Still Ticking - CHAPTER 1 | “The Lesson’s We Learn

Writer Author  Joshua Mumphrey
Christian Article : Inspirational  - Fiction  Yes

Christian Author Writer I’ve always dreaded the long drive that time of year, but regardless of how my lower back ached and my legs pained miserably, there was nowhere else I needed to be than where I was.

The smell of the country was so familiar; the scent of tall pine trees above was carried through the summer air and into my car as I drove down the winding unpaved road with my windows down.

I had long since forgotten how peaceful it was there, in the middle of nowhere with just the sound of mother nature, the sound of trees rustling as the wind blew through them, the sound of birds chirping and the roaring of my tires rolling over small rocks and acorns as it came to a slow stop.

I put the car in park, opened my driver side door and pull the key out of the ignition slightly, to silence the beeping of my vehicles electric system. I couldn’t get out just yet. I had one foot inside and the other on the light dirt covered ground. I placed my head on the steering wheel for a couple of seconds and mumbled a prayer.

Dear God, give me strength for I am weak and unbelievably worn. This is always so hard for me Lord, but I feel it’s something I have to do, it’s something that I promised I would do every year until I couldn’t anymore. God, promises are never meant to be broken so give me the strength to push though the sadness, through the longing, the depression and the overwhelming grief. Grandma passed over 15 years ago and it still isn’t easy visiting this place where she was laid to rest, but it isn’t the burden of losing grandma that I’m asking you to lighten today. I’m asking you to lighten a different load. I’m asking you to heal a fresh wound to the heart, my heart. Grandma lived a long and prosperous life, 97 years of mostly happiness, but Kayla my daughter of only 6 years was taken away with so much to still experience, to do and to share with me her mother and her family. I’m done asking the question why, because I’ve learned that everything happens according to your will, not my own, but I do ask another question. I ask you to make this easier for me to bare, easier for me to confront in the morning when I walk passed her bedroom and she’s no longer there. Give me peace oh Lord and deliver me from my tear stained pillow at night. I don’t ask that you bring her back, I asked that you give me the will to weather this storm and see me through to brighter days ahead and to greener pastures. In your name I pray, Amen.

I lifted my head up and stared out of the front windshield. A single tear fell from my watering eyes, but I caught it with my hand before it dampened my blue jeans. I took a deep breath and scooted out of my vehicle. I stood a bit shaky, but gained my balance. I slammed the door tightly behind me before I headed off into the distance.

I made my way to a iron gate that seemed to sore 8 feet high. It was intertwined with ivy and blossoming white flowers. A large iron sign above read Chrest Haven Memorial Cemetery. I cringed slightly and shivered as if I were cold after running my eyes across it, forgetting about the August heat.

It wasn’t much further after I had made it over the hill pasted the array of beautiful monuments and well crafted statues of guardian angles. I knew I was getting close when I noticed a copper standing memorial a few yards away. It was grandmas.

My daughter Kayla was buried next to her since Grandpa decided to give up his plot for his grandchild. He believed it was what grandma would have wanted, it was what he wanted. Kayla and Grandma Susan, were together on earth beneath the well manicured lawn and moist soil and they would also be together above the cloudless blue sky in heaven.

Once I had reached grandma’s tombstone, my hands were shaky and my heart was heavy. I couldn’t look over to where I knew my daughter lay. It hurt to see her name carved into a rose shaped stone that would last throughout time like my love. It was a tear jerking reminder that this was as close as I would ever get to being near her again in this life, but I did know that there was a possibility of seeing her in the next.

I know something now, I didn’t know then. It wasn’t best for me to shed tears for my daughter. She was in a better place; she was in Heaven and in God’s warm and loving embrace. I should have been filled with joy and thankfulness that she no longer had to suffer. Her fragile little body had taken all that it could. She just couldn’t fight the losing battle on her own anymore. There was just too many requests ahead of hers and she was too far down on the list. Kayla didn’t get the transplant in time and as a result, her little heart finally gave up.

If anything, Kayla should have been shedding tears for me that day, because my future wasn’t as secure as hers was. I was a sinner even though I believed. If it were me six feet under in her place, I knew that a chorus of angles wouldn’t be the sight I would behold, when I opened my eyes again. I would have been in a darker place, where I would never see her beautiful face again, a place of indescribable anguish, suffering and pain beyond comprehension. It would mean eternal separation for not only my daughter, but from the Heavenly father.

Kayla was ready, ready as she ever could have been, but I wasn’t. That’s why I was left behind even though I gladly would have traded places in an instant if God would have honored my prayer. Her path was one that I could not follow and it hurt deep down in my soul when I discovered that truth. Even now, I still don’t know why God decided to take her, but I know it was for a reason. Maybe, it was because he needed another angel or maybe because there was something he so desperately needed to teach me though her loss. It’s something I’ll never know, it’s something I don’t need to because I’ve grown to trust him unconditionally.

At first, I blamed God. He didn’t have to take my baby, he didn’t have to let time run out, he could have given her more. He could have let her live life like every other child her age without a terminal heart condition. It was so unfair and I thought it was unusually cruel.

Years after, I came to the realization that it was better for him to have taken her. She was better off in Heaven than here with me. The place where she was and the place I wanted her to be couldn’t compare. She had everything she ever wanted, everything she needed, everything I couldn’t give her. I learned that I was being selfish. I wanted her to linger, I wanted her to suffer and bare the pain to be here with me, but God knew better.

What kind of parent would I be to keep her from what God felt she deserved? There were no more tears, no more pain and suffering, at least not for her anymore. I believe now, it was for the best.

Wounds of the heart are ones that are the hardest to mend, but I’ve learned with good medicine and the Good doctor, any wound regardless how deep can always be healed.

As I walked back to my car, down the hill and to the gate, I glanced back at the field of green covered with gray stones. A light breeze blew through and I closed my eyes taking it in as it flowed over my skin. I felt an overwhelming sense of peace and hope that I can’t describe even now. It was as if my daughter spoke these words to me. To this day, I hold them close to my heart.

Mother, dear mother, don’t cry for me. I am an angel, something you always told me I was, but now, I’m the heavenly kind. Never lose faith in God and never lose hope that I’m no longer with you. I’m always there in spirit, with you when you wake in the morning, with you when you drive to work alone, with you when you whisper a prayer for strength. I’m in your heart forever and always. Hold close to Gods hand and I promise you will see my face again.

I took a few steps forward and turned to walk away closing the gate behind me. My heart was no longer troubled and my mind was no longer in turmoil, I was in perfect peace. I knew then, that God was the answer to all my questions; it was just a matter of me learning to trust him again.

Once I had trusted him, things were better just as his word assured me. He took away my every doubt, my every fear and gave me many more wonderful children whom I could give my love. They didn’t replace my dear Kayla, but they did make each day a little more bearable. It’s easier when you’re not alone, but I know now, looking back that I never was. God and Kayla were always there standing beside me, holding me up. Through it all the most important lesson I’ve learned was that it’s not about how much time we’re given, but about what we do with it while the clock is still ticking. From that moment on, I tried to make every minute count.

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About the Writer Author
State: Texas
Country: United States
Email: joshuamumphrey@aol.com
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