Welcome to Mommies with Hope

Come and find solace as you get to know us who share in this journey of grief. We have been praying for you and extend our deepest and sincere sympathy. We “hope” you experience comfort and peace in this safe haven of love and support.

Saturday, June 19, 2010

Dancing With Her Father

“You have turned my mourning into joyful dancing. You have taken away my clothes of mourning and clothed me with joy, that I might sing praises to you and not be silent. O Lord my God, I will give you thanks forever!”
Psalm 30:11-12 (N LT)

Having experienced loss, we each have those little reminders that catch us at the most unexpected moments. We see a child at the grocery store who looks to be about the age our child would be and we can’t help but wonder what might have been. Soon, tears are welling up in our eyes, begging for permission to flow freely and allow us to mourn something as simple as a grocery trip that would never happen with our child.

One such moment occurred quite recently in our own family as we drove down a long stretch of highway on a sunshiny morning. As we sped along, you could hear the quiet rumblings from the back seat as Gabe and Aiyana looked through their books. Justin and I sat in silence in front, taking in the beauty of the day set before us as we stared off into the horizon. Familiar tunes played on the car radio, which was set to our favorite station. To me, however, it was background noise as my mind wondered and my heart beat with anticipation in preparation for our Sunday morning worship. My thoughts were interrupted when my husband began to speak. I looked over to see his lip quivering and his eyes gloss over as he made reference to the song that was playing and said, “If she ever gets married, I’d like to dance to this song with her,” as he nodded toward the back seat in the direction of our two-year-old little girl. “It’s a good song,” he said. The song he was referencing was Stephen Curtis Chapman’s "Cinderella", which is a song about a father watching his little girl grow into a young woman, and at each stage of her life, he shared a dance with her.

In that moment, I knew the reason for the glossy eyes and the quivering lip. I knew it was much more than thinking about our healthy little girl in back, as she thumbed through children’s books and released an occasional squeal of delight. There was an unspoken understanding between Justin and I in that moment, affirmed by our reminiscent gaze, that acknowledged that he was dreaming of a dance that would never happen on this side of heaven. While he nodded toward Aiyana, both of our hearts went to Chloe, our first daughter, who had gone to be with Jesus four years ago.

While there will be no father, daughter dance with Chloe on this earth, we can’t help but imagine her dancing with her Father in heaven among the angels. I can just picture the day Justin goes home to heaven and sees His Savior face-to-face, and he may even need to say, “Excuse me...Jesus, may I cut in?” The thought of it brings a smile to my face. Chloe truly gave Justin a joy that transcends any earthly thing through a gift that was brought about through her life and death. The very fact that he was her daddy and had to let her go on that dark night in May was precisely what pointed him to the One, our Jesus, who makes possible that sweet and longed-for reunion in heaven. The description of such a gift can best be expressed by Justin in the following words…

"Hearing the kids play, laugh, and saying funny things puts a father's mind at ease, telling him that he's been doing a good job and to enjoy it. Then you hear a song that puts your heart and mind back to a past that is hard to deal with and you sometime just lose it in a moment. Hearing that song and remembering Chloe in that moment took me back to when I was holding her in my arms, but it wasn’t joyful at the time it was sorrowful. After four years I still have a very hard time talking about it, but one thing I don’t have a problem with talking about is that one thing that I will forever thank her and my Savior for is my salvation and humbling towards God. Chloe brought me closer to God than anyone before, it didn’t happen overnight, but after some crying, anger, sadness, and depression I heard the Lord’s message through the church we started going to, Lakeside Fellowship. I remember I started having hope again and I was asked if I wanted to do a bible study with the pastor and another guy that I have a grown a great friendship with.

We started reading through the Book of John and I remembered reading some of this stuff in my early college days. I started reading the bible more and more and the picture of Jesus started making more sense than it had in years. I remember the first sermon at the church we started going to and I learned more in an hour than I had the last four years. After a few weeks on September 11, 2006 I accepted God’s gift of grace and redemption into his kingdom. While me, my wife, and another friend prayed while I was accepting this Gift, I remember a burden being lifted off my shoulders. It was like I didn’t have to worry about Chloe anymore, because I knew she was being taken care of in Heaven with my Lord and Savior. This does not mean I don’t grieve, I think about her everyday, at least once if not more…but I don’t worry for her, I long to see her again. I know when I do pass on from this life and to Heaven I know I will dance with her every chance I get. As the song played in my head I imagined myself dancing with her and knowing that the clock will never strike midnight when I see her again!" (Chloe's Daddy)

May you and your family be blessed this Father's Day!

1 comment:

Diers said...

Oh Justin and Teske...how I remember both of the days you speak of in this blog...Chloe's day, Justin's salvation...and the many days since...Praise God for His goodness and the joy of knowing that one day we will all dance with Him and Chloe and the many many others who call Him their savior!!!