It came to me the other day. Almost as a shock. With all the craziness in this year of 2020. With faces hidden behind masks.  With people separated from family and friends. With news, and noise, and numbers.

I had not been thinking of Aaron so much. I was grieving for others.

My prayers were purposeful, not perplexed. “ God help us!”  Help US, not just Me.  Knowing fully that God can, and does help. He does hear our cries, and He does answer.

Sorrow can be so solitary.  I know that to be true. But it can strangle, forming a focus on ourselves that can defeat us.

Last year was extreme, exhausting and exacting, as we grappled with dire news reports that wear our souls thin.

But there is a remedy that breaks open our wound of grief and soothes our soul of sorrow.

It is to think of others, to enter into their hurt. That’s what Christ did when He walked this earth. And He wants us to do the same. Praying for them, reaching out to others.

Bearing their burdens as God does ours.

We can by His Mercy give hope.  To not be defeated by the craziness around us.  But to continue to trust that God is in control.   So we can relax our grip on those things which were never ours to deal with anyway.

There are people I know who are brave during these times. They are not afraid of the what ifs, but understand what we fear is what we worship.

If I give way to fear, my focus is on myself, and that can be consuming.  If I worship God, I gain the right perspective. I focus on Someone greater than life itself, and I can offer hope to the hopeless.

Hope is a breath of fresh air. And as I breathe it out into this heavy masked world and they receive it, we move forward into whatever comes our way.  Knowing we  are not the ones in control, but knowing Who is.

Jill Smoot can be reached



Jill Smoot

I am happily married to my husband, Dwight, and we are blessed with five children, six grandchildren. I am active in my church, and I have been a teacher, bible study leader, and a guest speaker at a women's conference in Oklahoma City. My topic was about children born with cleft palates, which our youngest adopted daughter was born with. I attended junior college, but only one semester. Have traveled to Ukraine three times, as I have relatives living there. Taught myself Russian, so I could converse, but it is very basic.I am an organic " farmer", on a small scale. I am a Master Gardener. I am currently doing book signings, but hope to connect with those involved with mental health. .I am looking for opportunities to share my story of our son, Aaron. to reach out to those who hurt as we still do. To come alongside of those whose lives are torn apart as ours was, and to offer the comfort and hope I found in God.

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