The One Who Will Never Leave

On this Easter weekend, I’ve been in a thoughtful mood, considering what it means to be present with someone during their darkest hour. In my Christian faith, that brings me to the heart of a mother–specifically Mary, the mother of Jesus. On Good Friday, I thought of what it would be like to witness your son’s brutal death on a cross, wanting to never leave his side yet experiencing heartbreak beyond comprehension. As hard as it would be to watch his final hours, how could you not be present until he drew his last breath–never abandoning your child no matter the circumstances.

I know mothers who’ve been by a child’s bedside in the ICU after overdoses; mothers who’ve visited children in prison; mothers who’ve watched their grown babies be carried away to quiet rooms on psychiatric units. No matter how bad it was to be with that child in those unbelievable settings, when things had seemed to go so well earlier in life, those women could not stay away. When we truly love, we go with that person no matter how dark and deep the valley.

Photo by Chinmay Singh on

True love, whether as a mother or a spouse or friend, goes with the other through ‘thick and thin.’ Often there’s silent waiting– for a verdict, a diagnosis, a lucky break, a shift in a life situation. There are no words that provide the desired healing balm, no magic cures, or easy answers. It all reduces down to the most essential thing: being present.

While I know the value of being present, have been there with family and friends during dark hours, I’ve also had times when I ignored or avoided that time that was difficult. I may have used an excuse of being too busy, or not knowing what to say, or not being the right person. Could have been that I was physically and emotionally drained from my own life and didn’t have energy to spare; there are times like that for all of us–when we’re not the one who should be present.

We do need a well to draw from when we’re with someone going through a dark valley. It helps if we’ve nurtured ourselves with rest and that which renews us–whether it’s scripture, prayer, meditation, inspirational music, contemplative walks that fill our hearts and minds with the images of creation. Whatever builds us up so we can support another will help us to stay the course.

Today at the Easter service, we sang a song by Brandon Lake and Elevation Worship and one line grabbed my attention:

“You turn graves into gardens”

Photo by Mike on

It’s another expression of how God can make beauty from ashes, how pain can be redeemed. Life is filled with hard moments, with the darkness of tragedy, lives forever changed. If we can be present, daring to walk through that dark valley accompanying the one we love, we will know pain but we will also know the joy that comes from that true connection of being the one who will never leave.

Blessings to you this Easter and in the days ahead,


Trinity Center Southern Outer Banks of North Carolina April 2021

6 thoughts on “The One Who Will Never Leave

  1. I’ve understood so much more (and yet still such a small fraction) of faith and God after becoming a parent and then far more after my MBC diagnosis. And then ironically my logical mind reminds me how much about faith is intangible and unknowable. But am very much appreciating how trauma and experience gives us more glimpses into the Divine.


    • Hey Abigail,
      I love how you say it– “trauma and experience gives us more glimpses into the Divine.” That is so true. We understand that at the hardest of times, we are forced into the present and can look into a flower and see part of the mystery of God.
      Wishing you and your sweet family the very best.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Very nice presentation. I know that my Mom had to sit with my older brother as he lost his fight with cancer. That day was just a blur as well as a mess. We did make it through the process of finality and moved on. The world is there to us to miss the point with a National Lawmaker making negative remarks about passengers on a plane singing on Sunday morning, then posting the event on the internet. There is much for “we the people” to stand and bring our Country back to our founding. Love and Blessings to you.


    • Hey John,
      I’m sure that was an incredibly hard time for your mother, as it was for you. Being there and going through it with your brother must have helped when you moved on–knowing you did everything you could do–being present until the end.
      Blessings to you at this Easter season,

      Liked by 1 person

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