Her time of departure was at hand.
She fought a good fight.
She finished her course.
She kept her faith.
Well done, thou good and faithful servant.
I may be called on to speak, yet I feel I have no voice, words and heart fail me. I feel like the phoenix, a mythical bird with beautiful gold and red plumage. At the end of its life-cycle the phoenix builds itself a nest of cinnamon twigs that it then ignites; both nest a bird burn fiercely and are reduced to ashes, from which a new, young phoenix arises. The new phoenix is destined to live, usually, as long as the old one.
I feel as if my emotions have been ignited, fiercely burned, and been reduced to ashes. Now I must garner strength from the example of the old phoenix, my grandmother. As the new young phoenix I must arise and live my alloted days as well as the old one did and make her proud.
The story of the phoenix is a symbol of Christ, representing His death, resurrection, and life-after death in heaven. These are the truths the foundation of my faith are built on and they comfort me in this time of loss and grieving. I cling to the promises that I will receive comfort in my mourning and it will be turned into joy, eventually replacing my sorrow. I know my broken heart will be bound up. I know that He will give me beauty for ashes and strength in fear as He drapes me in a garment of praise, which will cloak the spirit of heaviness. He will enable me to honor her and glorify Him.
Perhaps I too will be able to amass some of the beautiful plumage the old phoenix is known for. Some gold, in the form of richness of character, wealth of wisdom, and a treasure trove of the Christian graces ~ love, joy, peace, patience, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, and self-control. Some red, a primary color of light, living in the Spirit and walking in the Spirit, sharing the light of Christ. My grandmother bore such plumage and I can only hope that as I rise from the ashes of sorrow that it will be reborn and reflected in me. This is the greatest last gift I can give to honor her ~ to walk in her shoes.
Struggling to rise,