She had been wearing the same thing for a year.
I had never bothered to ask why, even though I sat with her in bible study group every week for the past four months.
A white dress, a white skirt and a white scarf.
At first I thought it was a religious thing and not wanting to probe, I just got used to it and then today I get to church and she looks amazing. Hair freshly styled, a gold tinged outfit that would catch your eye and make up that make her look nothing less than gorgeous. I was going to complement her on her looks and then I heard the story.
She had lost her husband a year ago and culturally the widow was to wear white for a full year after the death of her husband. In my culture, the widow wears black for the year so I never really figured it out. Her year of mourning was now over and she had taken off her widow’s garb and we were thrilled for her.
A week ago, someone I knew lost a long battle to cancer. He lost weight, his strength and then his earthly life but he never lost his faith.
A month ago I lost a mentor -again to cancer-. His progression was the same (or so I was told). I hadn’t seen him in a while and it was only after he passed that I got to know what he had been fighting.
Sometimes when someone is stuck in a season for a long time- especially a hard season- it’s hard to see beyond their struggle.
It’s easy to have them in a box. Always sick, always struggling, always uptight, always in a bad way, always without.
The rest of us see them on a downward slope and my guess is, when we’re the ones struggling with a protracted bad season, we have a hard time seeing ourselves out of it.
One of the things I love about God?
He has an expiry date for every bad season.
Those friends of mine in heaven? I’m willing to bet they wouldn’t want to come back for anything.
They are healthy, happy and whole in ways those of us here cannot even begin to understand.
The lady in my study group?
She’s probably had the worst year of her life and finally she’s out of it.
God has the same promise for us.
No matter how bad things may get, He has an end date for the heartache.
A day will come when we feel like putting on high heels and make up again. There will be a time when He says enough to the pelting of pain we feel when life is on the downward spiral.
Nothing lasts forever.
Especially the bad stuff.
God will see to that.
Afra Opoku is a Christian Writer who delights in painting word portraits of a tender hearted King.
Her book “He Restoreth My Soul” is available in the Kindle store on Amazon.com