About the Author

Recovering approval-seeker learning to BE; wife for almost 10 years; mom to 4; lover of Jesus, Wyoming, coffee, books, fly-fishing, family & music. Grateful for grace & His song over me.

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  1. Oh this….. WOW!……

    So I have a choice. My mom has made hers. She has chosen to live her life for Him and His Glory – even if He doesn’t set her free from her disease this side of heaven. Her life sings of His love and His grace and His faithfulness in the now. She has found freedom in her pain. She has chosen it.

      • Karen, thank you for your prayers. My wonderful Mom is experiencing fullness of freedom in Heaven with Jesus now. We lost her in June. But she left a beautiful legacy here for the rest of us. Have a blessed day.

  2. Hi Laura
    Im sorry for the loss of your Mom. You sure encouraged me when I read this. It is a choice to decide to allow God’s joy, love , peace and freedom to get us through the unfair and struggles of our life. This year I was bed ridden from February till May. I have gradually gotten better and I’m so thankful. I found God in such an intimate way that I had not known before. I know not being able to read, watch tv, talk to people much was so isolating I cried and cried. I had no idea why this was happening to me. One day I was listening to the bible and I thought God has me he is doing His good work in me. A few weeks later a scripture from Isaiah 41:13 For I hold you by your right hand I, the Lord your God. And I say to you, Don’t be afraid, for I will help you. I was so filled with anxiety not knowing what was wrong with me. After God gave me that verse each day I chose Jesus and I prayed for healing and I praised him whether my healing was here or in Heaven. I go to the specialist tomorrow for my follow up after all my tests now r complete. I am not fearful because God is holding my right hand. My marriage has suffered and my husband took such good care of me but it took a toll on him. My Mom helped out to and it was hard on her to now to regain strength shes 77 yrs young. Im so blessed to have had the wonderful care I needed. So I have rambled on here. Laura being the caregiver of your Mom was such a blessing to her. She is now in Heaven with her Father. They are both smiling down on you! Thank you for encouraging me to continue to choose Jesus. Its easier said then done. However when I do what is hard the easy comes with it. Thank you for being such a sweet daughter and caring for your Mom. I will be praying for you as you process your grief. Keep on writing and encouraging it helps others and God has given you a beautiful gift.

    • Mariellen,

      Thank you for sharing your story. Isaiah 41:13 is highlighted brightly in my Mom’s bible, too. Some of your words remind me of things she said, especially when you mentioned finding God in a more intimate way. That was her joy, the depth and intimacy she found in the midst of her hardest battles. It characterized her whole life, as I’m sure it will yours. I praise Jesus for your gradual healing and pray now for complete healing. For restoration of your marriage to better than it was before and for rest and the regaining of strength for your Mama. My heart is full toward you-you are brave and strong and as you face the test results with peace, holding our Father’s hand, you will encourage and inspire many to look to the Source of your joy. God bless you and keep you and make His face to shine upon you. “The Lord is gracious and righteous; our God is full of compassion. The Lord protects the unwary; when I was brought low, he saved me. Return to your rest, my soul, for the Lord has been good to you. For you, Lord, have delivered me from death, my eyes from tears, my feet from stumbling, that I may walk before the Lord in the land of the living.” (Psalm 116:5-9)

      Love, prayers & blessings, In Him,
      Laura

  3. Laura, first of all, I’m so sorry about your mom. How very hard it must be to watch her suffer. I’ve watched my mom-in-law languish in a nursing home, gradually losing her ability to speak, her body racked with pain and it has been difficult at best. But like your mom, she is modeling the joy of Jesus in the midst of pain which speaks of her/their incredible faith!
    Such an interesting distinction you make here about freedom *from* suffering and freedom *in* suffering. To be honest, I think in my own life, when I’ve gone through seasons of trials, especially when those seasons are elongated, I am usually praying for God to deliver me from the pain, more than help me through it. Your post gives me pause about what TRUE freedom in Christ is really about. Thank you for sharing your heart with us. <3
    May I say a prayer over you and your mom?
    Heavenly Father,
    We come before you, thanking You for the beautiful testimony of Laura's mom. We thank You for the strength You are giving her to carry on and praise You, even in the midst of her suffering. We ask for your continued mercy and lovingkindness to overshadow her and fill her through and through. We ask You to be glorified in her suffering that those around her may see You.
    Father I ask You to encourage my sister Laura in her spirit. Hold her hand and gently guide her as she navigates her mother's illness. Strengthen her hands when they hang low and her knees when they are weak. Make the crooked paths straight and the mountains low for her, giving her wisdom and discernment in how to best care for her mom. Help Laura to trust in You in the midst of this season. Be a light to her path and lamp to her feet so that she won't stumble, making her steps will be sure.
    Help her daily, to place her mom in your capable, loving hands and trust in your ways, perfect timing and will for her life. I also ask for a band of angels to come to her aid when she needs help. A card or phone call to encourage her. Rides for her children. A meal when the day has been long. May the church body rise up to meet her every need.
    I pray and ask all of these things in the name of Jesus, trusting and believing that we have asked according to your will.

      • Caryn,
        Thank you for your sweet words and prayer. No need to apologize for not seeing the other comment first. I’m grateful for your prayer. Because it caused me to stop and reflect for a moment on this journey. And as I did, I realized that everything you prayed for, God answered in those days. Everything you asked was completely in line with what our Father has done in my/our lives these last months.
        I’m sorry to hear about your mother-in-law’s struggles. It is so difficult to watch our loved ones hurt. How beautiful, though, when we can see more of Jesus through their faith and joy in the midst of their pain. Thank you again, sweet sister, for all that you wrote. You and your mother-in-law will be in my heart and prayers.

        In Christ,
        Laura

  4. I can’t even…

    I love this post so much. This is exactly how I feel and you wrote it so eloquently.

    Thank you so much for sharing your heart.

    • Marty,
      It is a privilege to write & share the things the Holy Spirit reveals to my heart. Thank you for reading it and for your comment. Blessings to you today.
      -Laura

  5. Oh my…..thank you so much for putting into words something I have tried to express for over 2 years now. I lost my father and the description of your mother is exactly how my father faced his final months and days. I am truly sorry for your loss and pray for you and your family. I thank you for sharing your heart.

    • Mimi,
      I’m sorry you lost your father… losing a parent, I’m learning, is a life-changer. I didn’t expect to feel so…different, changed once she was gone. What a blessing for us both, though, that our loved ones faced death in a way that taught us how to live! Thank you for reading. I’m sorry it took me so long to respond-I thought I had responded yesterday and just now saw that there was no reply from me. Have a blessed day!
      -Laura

  6. My dearest sweet niece, Laura. What a gift God has given you in being able to express our hearts when we cannot. Your momma was so much like a sister to me. Over the years I have loved her and enjoyed our relationship. One thing that always stood out was that she put Jesus first in her life. She loved HIM. I am so sorry to see her gone from your sweet family. Know she does see beyond the veil. She does care that you run the race well. God created family and the bond will not be broken in Heaven. When my sister, your aunt Christina passed away a few weeks ago, I was happy for her to be out of her pain and suffering, and she always said, “may God’s will be done on earth as it is in heaven”. She was so brave. What brings me great joy and comfort is knowing that your mom was there to greet her and love on her along with her Savior, Jesus. I miss my sister, but I have a peace that passes all understanding. Is it because my sister and your mommy had such grace in the face of suffering? They were neither one of them afraid to meet their savior and friend? God bless you my sweet niece whom I love with all of my heart.

    • My sweet Aunt Ruth,
      I wish we lived closer!!! You are so right about Mom and Aunt Christina. So hard to lose them both so young and so close together, but what beautiful examples of God’s grace & freedom they both were. Their legacies of love and faith will live on to inspire another generation. So thankful for Jesus, for His peace, for family near and far… I love you so much.
      Love,
      Laura

    • Susan,
      I agree, reading the stories of others does bring a certain perspective to this life we live… That’s part of why I love (in)courage so much… We can share and grow and learn how to navigate this life together. She was very brave and her life and the way she chose to live it out will forever inspire me-and hopefully many others. Thank you for your prayers!

      In Christ,
      Laura

  7. Laura..I don’t know you but tears filled my eyes as I read. I lost my mother and dad both to cancer. It was so hard to see them suffer…but now they are free. I have lupus and some other complicating things, along with severe chronic pain. When I read your writing I felt like it could be my daughter writing it and I got a new vision of what it’s like for her. Not easy.

    I, too, am in bed much of the time…and it’s been years. But I have chosen “joy in pain”…through God’s help. It’s the only way to have a smile…it’s the only way to have joy in my life and in my heart. There’s some verses in Ps. 84:5-7. It talks about going through “the valley of weeping”…but rain is showered down and fills the pools and we go “from strength to strength”. This is how your Mother lived her life and it’s how I strive to live mine. God showers down “the rain” of His joy and blessings…His strength”…and it gives us strength. We go from strength to strength. It can be a beautiful, though not easy and challenging, life. But her witness spoke to you…and was beautiful.

    May God bless you is my prayer.
    BJR

    • Your strength and perseverance in the face of your struggles are inspiring. I hear some of my Mom’s words in yours, she said so many similar things. May our great and Holy God continue to give you His strength and grace each day of your journey. Thank you for sharing your story.

      Blessings & Prayers,
      Laura

      • Laura…that is my journey, that is my part in life…to show God’s power and the joy He can give me, IN SPITE…IN THE FACE OF PAIN. That show’s His glory, and that is what my heart’s desire is—to portray this to my family and friends, and beyond. Is it easy all the time? No…but it is the most blessed thing I can do. And i am rewarded, and your Mother was, too. (And is now!)

        I am an artist…as much as I can be. My medium is pen and ink, with some watercolor occasionally added. I can’t do it everyday, but when I can, it makes me happy! I can “get into it” and almost forget about part of the pain in the process. I have been told that love and peace are portrayed in the drawings and it thrills me, for that’s always my goal.

        Thanks for sharing your mother’s story. It has inspired me to keep on the journey of joy…”in spite of”. Don’t worry…I’m human. I fail, too. But for the most part, I can smile and feel joy. Sometimes I’m a bit quiet…but in those times I think of God. It is the only way to live happy with a great amount of pain. The Dr’s do what they can to give relief, but it just doesn’t work well. It’s been 30 years now, I was 26, with three small children…8, 5, and 3. 2 boys and a little girl. Somedays I long for Heaven inside…but my time will come. Until then…I chose joy.

        God bless.
        BJR

  8. Rudolf,
    I did take a number of years of French in school, but I am VERY rusty and can’t quite make out what your comment says. So sorry! Can you help me out a bit?

  9. My heart goes out to you. My mom was 56 when she passed away almost five yrs ago. I had four little kids, husband….and hospice. It was an extremely hard journey. The words you wrote I could have regarding my mom, her pain, and the freedom she found in Christ throughout it. I did not find freedom then. I knew The Lord, however it wasn’t until about two yrs ago that I finally experienced the freedom He gives when we truly just give it all over to Him and realize He is our everything. I found this in the midst of the most painful heartbreak of my life. God used that time in my life to not only restore what was almost lost (my marriage of now 19 yrs next month) but more importantly my husbands faith in Him. We now live for Christ, we don’t merely say ‘we believe’. How awesome it is to be living life in this way! I praise The Lord for calling us out of our luke warm life and into a burning passionate love for him as well as a heart that aches for all to know this love, forgiveness and peace that Jesus offers!

    • Mary,
      How similar our experiences were! I love that about incourage-women who would never know each other’s stories connect and find commonality, compassion and courage to keep on. What a beautiful, redemptive story you have-thank you so much for sharing it with me. There is nothing in this world like falling head over heels in love with Jesus! Thankful for your husband’s faith in Christ as well as the deepening of your relationship with Him. It is so…God…to use the most broken seasons, the deepest heartache and make them so beautifully full of purpose and renewal. Love and blessings, precious sister…
      -Laura

  10. Thank for you sharing this. It is what I am living through right now. I am so glad that my mother and I are together and individually at peace, but there are still moments each day . . .

    • Oh, Susan… I’m so sorry for all that you’re going through. The moments each day…they’re hard. Really hard. I knew I didn’t want my Mom to be anywhere other than in my home for the rest of her time on earth, and I am so grateful for all the one on one time we shared. But, sister, I know it is not easy. It changed me. All of it. Taking care of her during her illness, watching her slip away, and trying now to move on without her-it has changed me in ways I don’t fully understand yet. You will be in my prayers for sure. I am praying for grace, strength for both of you, moments of renewal and refreshment and sweet moments for the two of you to share.
      So much love and understanding,
      Laura

    • Susan,

      Prayers for you and your family as you struggle to care for your mom. May God give you the strength you need to endure each day and each new Prayers for your family to cope and assist you with all the chores.

      Mostly for peace and contentment knowing God is in control and loves you deeply!

      Blessings 🙂

  11. Knowing how my own heart broke as I journeyed with my mom I ponder often my mothering. May it be as good as my mom’s. My sweet mom rejoiced in her final home and we often talked about heaven. Regardless the journey was hard and at times still is. That scripture in Isaiah has been a source of strength this year for me too. Such comfort and peace knowing God is holding my right hand, leading me long. I have often felt and said I’ve been blessed to have loved and been loved so deeply to also feel the pain of desperation so deeply. Wouldn’t trade those moments of pain because I also got the moments of love. Peace for you on your journey. You will always miss your mom, but with time it doesn’t hurt as intensely.

    • Thank you for sharing. I’m with you-some moments were incredibly hard, but I wouldn’t trade one minute of my time with her for anything else. Blessings & love to you.
      -Laura

  12. Laura
    Thank you! Thank you for bending so God could use you to share with us. Beautiful beautiful truth and lesson that I didn’t know I needed today!
    May this devotional be my prayer today and each day forward.

    • Christina,
      Thank you for reading. I need it everyday, too. It’s one thing to understand, and even write about the freedom of Jesus, and another thing entirely to live in that freedom each day. Blessings to you, sister!
      -Laura

  13. Laura,

    So sorry for the loss of your beloved mother. I pray you realize that she is truly free now. Free from pain and in the loving arms of Jesus.

    Your words encouraged me today greatly. I have a choice to allow Jesus’s freedom in the pain or to ask to be relieved from the pain altogether.

    I went through a similar kind of “trial” with my mom from 2007-2009. She went into hospital with abdominal pain. They said diverticulitis and 2 weeks later released her to rehab. Long story short meds mixed up and incorrect diet she went to ER again and ICU for 2 weeks then a good rehab for 2 weeks. When she got home she became totally bedridden with dementia, already had a little, and sundowners. It was hard to visit weekly and watch her slowly progress away from me. Her death was cathartic for me as I saw it as Freedom for both mom and dad.
    Now it’s my turn to help dad find freedom in his pain of old age. I get to radiate God’s love and freedom to him.

    Blessings 🙂

    • Beth,
      What a difficult road you walked with your Mom. It is sweet for both of us to have the assurance that both of our Moms are now basking in the presence of our Savior and experiencing the fullness of freedom in Him. Prayers for you and your dad as you journey with him. Love and peace to you!
      -Laura

  14. Laura, I have read your story, and all of the comments and your responses, and just want to say it was beautifully written. Having lived through a small part of this very difficult journey you have gone through, I just want to say how proud I am of you and your beautiful family. You have found your calling in writing, (I believe), and I am looking forward to what the future holds for you in writing for God’s purposes!

  15. Laura
    Thank you so much for your post,I felt as it was everything I feel but don’t know how to word it. I sometimes in my pain and agony blame God and cannot understand why he will not help me but your eloquent words help me to understand. You are definetly blessed with a gift, please continue to post to help people like me who can’t understand. I also want to say I am deeply sorry for your moms passing but I believe she is smiling and watching over you. God bless you.