I was fifteen and home alone with my mom, who was sick. Turning to leave her room after checking on her, I thought, Tell her you love her. It seemed imperative, so I did. It took three breaths for her to say she loved me too. A half hour later, I found her dead.
I remember every detail of that night. For a week, I barely slept. I refused to stay home; and at school, I kept breaking down. No one seemed to understand or care that I felt guilty for leaving Mom alone. I prayed, begging God to forgive me and to take me too.
“Blessed are those who mourn, for they will be comforted.”
Matthew 5:4 (NRSV)
Six hundred people gathered for a celebration of my mother’s life. As I climbed the stairs to the pulpit and stared into the crowd, I felt like running; but God gave me strength. In a calm voice, I talked about the impact my mother had on everyone who knew her.
The past few years without her have been the loneliest of my life. Whenever I feel that I can’t go on, I remember that
in Christ, I am never alone. If Christ brought me through the ordeal of my mother’s death, Christ can and will help me through anything.
PRAY FOR TEENS WHO HAVE LOST A PARENT:
God, grant them the assurance of your presence now
and faith in your eternal goodness,
that in them may be fulfilled the promise
that those who mourn shall be comforted;
through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.*
*For Those Who Mourn from The United Methodist Hymnal © 1989. Used by permission. All rights reserved.
—from devozine (January/February 2013). Copyright © 2012 by The Upper Room®. All rights reserved.