Treasures to Hold

Just over three months ago, a very dear friend of mine breathed her last breath.  She had fought long and hard, a battle that would have caused many to quit, yet never in the nine years of the invasion of that devastating disease, did Anne even once, allow cancer to define her.  She knew with all certainty that she was above all, a child of God.  Her faith in our Heavenly Father did not waiver, regardless of what the doctors had told her.

Her perseverance and unwavering faith, are two of the things that I most admired about Anne.  So often, she would extend encouragement to those who were providing her medical care.  Laughter and light-hearted banter were common during many of her appointments.  The verse that brought her great comfort in her final days was 2 Timothy 4:7, “I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith.” For she had indeed fought and finished in firm faith.

A dear friend asked me how I might remember Anne this Christmas.  I was a bit taken aback, as avoidance has been my coping mechanism of choice.  However, it is nearly impossible to navigate this season without reminders of my dear friend, as we have had many outings in this most blessed of seasons gone by.  As we spoke, I realized that perhaps part of me had avoided actual shopping in stores for gifts this year, as that is something that Anne and I have done together many times over the past few years.

I do not yet know if I am meant to do anything in particular to remember Anne, but I do know that I am to embrace her memory – the gift of friendship that I was given in her – and to be grateful for the example she set in perseverance and faith, and for the assurance that I have, knowing that she fought the good fight and is home, where I will one day see her again.

My heart will now hold,OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

memories so dear;

treasures of friendship,

hope that is secure.

The faithful fighter,

no more needs to fight;

now in heaven’s hold,

our Savior’s delight.

I will remember,

the blessings I’ve known;

modeled endurance,

such steadfast faith shown.

Thank You, Lord Jesus,

for Your gifts of grace;

may we be steadfast,

secure in our faith.

Dear Heavenly Father, thank You for the gifts that You give us in friends.  Thank You for the blessings that they bring, be it for a season or for a lifetime.  Thank You for the lessons that we learn from one another, when we are securely rooted in You.  Forgive us for not facing painful or sorrowful things, and help us to embrace each of the experiences that You bring, trusting that You have a purpose and a plan to use each experience for our ultimate good.  Teach us to persevere when things are difficult, and to have a faith that is unwavering, even when all seems to be shaking around us.  May our confidence and security in You, be a living testimony to all who are around us.  May many come to call You King this Christmas.  Be our hope and our help, Lord God.  Amen.

© Shannon Elizabeth Moreno and Revelations in Writing, May 2011 – present.

18 Comments

  1. This is touching to my heart Shannon. I am praying for the Lords tender embracing of your heart and mind during this holiday season as you remember and cherish memories of your beloved friend Anne. However you choose to do it, He is with you. Hugs,
    Terra

    • Thanks so much, Terra. His kindness through sweet friends like you, continually embraces my heart with reminders of His hope. Blessings to you and your loved ones during this most wonderful season of all!
      Hugging you back,
      Shannon 🙂

  2. Your prayers are so beautiful and they inspire my own prayers for my Women’s weekly bible study group. Thank-you.

    • That is such a wonderful encouragement to me, thank you. Blessings to you and the ladies as you meet each week and faithfully seek Him! Have a wonderful Christmas! 🙂

  3. What a beautiful post and poem in memory of your beautiful friend Anne … sending hugs as you navigate this season without her xx

  4. This is the first Christmas I will spend without my mother. Mom died April 30th, almost 8 months ago today. She had lived with me for the past 18 years, so losing mom was more like losing my right arm.

    Doesn’t seem like Christmas yet.

    Your poem was beautiful! Thank you for sharing it!

    • My prayers are with you, as I can only imagine the loss you are feeling. May you hold fast to the treasured memories of your mom, and be surrounded by His peace this Christmas. Blessings to you as you mourn and learn to live in a new normal.
      ❤ Shannon

  5. I know the Father’s tender heart holds you close as you treasure this precious ‘forever’ friendship…blessings and prayers, Susan

  6. Beautiful post. I’m so sorry for your loss, Shannon. It seems that many people are grieving during the holidays. My family and I just lost an Uncle that passed away from cancer right after Thanksgiving. When I went to the funeral, I learned of more family members that were diagnosed with cancer. Thank you for reminding us to have an eternal perspective during the whole process of grieving. I’m so glad your friend had a relationship with God and you will see her one day in our real home in Heaven!

    • Danielle,
      I am so sorry for your family’s recent loss, and for the battles that are before you. My prayers are with you all in the days ahead, as it is never easy, despite the blessed hope that we hold dear. May this Christmas be filled with treasured times together, where laughter, peace and grace, overwhelm each of you.
      ❤ Shannon

  7. He giveth grace doesn’t He, and mercy to help in time of need. True friendships are rare, so the loss must be greater. .No body can take your memories, and nobody can steal your hope of seeing her again.

    Thank God for his promises through his enduring and endearing word.

  8. What a beautiful friendship. Anne was so blessed to have you in her corner, and we’ve all been so blessed by the tender thoughts you’ve shared about her. You remain in my prayers!

    • Thank you so much, Patricia. You prayers are felt, as His grace has been overwhelmingly present. May it be a wonderful time of blessing for you and your loved ones, as I know you have lost dear ones too.
      ❤ Shannon

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