I John 3:18

All original content copyright Jessica Nicole Schafer, 2007-2016.

Friday, May 31, 2013


When I was a tender little girl, I was known in my hometown for my smiles and laughter.  I smiled, my big smile....I laughed, my VERY loud laugh....all the time.  I remember hearing how much people loved it.  I also remember being told to be quiet...my laughter was too loud.  That I needed to calm down, I was getting too excited.

Fast forward to now. 

I've poured my heart into writing over the past several years, especially after losing Momma.  I've shared my grief with whomever chooses to read, because I believe it is SO very important to share our stories.  I've shared my tears, my pain, the emptiness that enters in after losing a loved one.  I've been super transparent, many times more than I even cared to be.  I've been told I "grieve" too much, that I need to get over it.  I've been told that I dwell on it too much.  I've been told to move on. I've been told that my tears are too loud.  That I need to calm down, I'm getting too extreme.

I am thankful for a God who boldly disagrees with the mindset that I'm "feeling" too much.  I am thankful God gave us laughter, smiles, frowns, and tears.

I am thankful God created us to feel.

Because of feeling, we love.  We learn what is good, we learn what is bad.  We learn to identify those rare and precious moments, when we see pieces of Heaven.  We also learn to identify when pieces of hell are in our midst.

Because of feeling, we learn how to love.  We love our parents.  We love our siblings.  We "fall in love" with our spouses, and then experience love in ways we never expected.  We watch it grow.  We cling to our spouses, become even closer to them year after year.  We love them more.  We feel more.  

I am fascinated with how much our culture puts so much meaning into "moving on", "letting go", "getting over" the many things that life throws our way.

I don't know if I'm just a slow learner, or what.....but I always see God in the times that I'm living IN the moments.  When I'm really feeling the goodnesss, silliness, crazy love that happens in our family, with my husband and son, I see God.  When I'm laughing among friends, I see God.  When we partake in the Eucharist, I see God.  When we're sharing a table with loved ones, when I'm singing our sweet offspring to sleep, when my husband bends down to hold me, kiss me, tell me he loves me, I see God.  
When I'm hugging a friend who is mourning a loved one, I see God.  When I'm feeling the grief of someone else's loss, I see God.  When our son is crying, hurting, I see God.  When I see a person/group of people being oppressed and cast out, looking for a place to belong, I see God.  When I'm clinging to a memory of my Momma late at night, tears flowing heavily...I see God.  

When I read the Gospels, when I read the Bible, I get the idea that maybe we ARE supposed to feel.  I get the idea that being created in His image is a good thing.  I get the idea that our humanity, our compassion, our grief, our love for one another.....our FEELING is something that points towards God.