“You changed my mourning into dancing; O Lord, my God, forever will I give You thanks” – Psalm 30:11

The Psalms of David were my grandmother’s favorite. She loved the poetic writing of a man expressing his relationship and walk with God in the good and bad, through a variety of emotions and experiences. The raw honesty and prophetic wisdom of the Psalms captured her attention.

This year, as my grandmother faced her last days on earth, I sat at her bedside one night and read to her from the Psalms. I watched as she relaxed while the words were spoken. I delighted in just the two of us gathered before the Lord (Matthew 18:20). These were small, seemingly insignificant moments I will treasure forever. After a summer of struggle, my loving grandmother finally passed into eternity. There are not enough words to describe what she meant to me. For 33 years I had the privilege of calling her mine. The first of nine grandchildren, she smothered me with unconditional love and affection until the very end. Her faith, wisdom, compassion, care, and life-giving advice were unrivaled. Up until her last day she was still allowing herself to be used by God to bring people together, minister to their lives, heal wounds, and show us what really matters in life. When it finally hit me that this woman who had been such a solid rock in my life was gone, I was filled with mourning. However, as I turned to God and laid my pain down at His feet, I delighted in the truth of where my grandmother was.

What was mortal was swallowed up by life (2 Corinthians 5:4). I could be confident, living by faith, not by sight (2 Corinthians 5:6-7). For the body that is sown perishable is raised imperishable; sown in dishonor but raised in glory, sown in weakness, raised in power, sown a natural body, raised a spiritual body. The perishable has been clothed with imperishable, and the mortal with immortality (1 Corinthians 15:42-53). Because of Jesus, death has been swallowed up in victory (1 Corinthians 15:54-57). The light and momentary afflictions in this life are working for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory (2 Corinthians 4:17). God took me outside my emotions so I could rest on the truth that my grandmother’s passing was actually her Resurrection Day, and that was a reason to celebrate.

Dear God, thank You that You turn our mourning into dancing. Thank You that in Jesus, we have the promise of being resurrected with You and to dwell with You forever. Amen.

Joshua Kinney

To view the full Advent 2021 booklet in English, click here.

For Spanish, click here.

For French, click here.

2 comments on “December 16

  1. John Ostick on

    Joshua,

    Beautiful reflection on the goodness of your grad mom’s love of family and relationships. Your dad could not be more proud of you.

    Happy Advent & Christmas season

    John Ostick
    Malvern Prep AP Exonomics teacher
    Former Mount Saint Joe teacher, 1977-1981

    Reply
  2. Patrick McStravog on

    Josh
    What a beautiful-tribute to a woman who loved you all so unconditionally. It is sure and certain that she lives anew with God.
    Peace and Blessings to you this Christmas
    Fr. Patrick

    Reply

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