Monday, February 4, 2013

My Journey: How Do You Find Peace?

My husband is the kind of man who walks through Walmart singing his favorite Frank Sinatra songs without the slightest idea anyone notices. He processes things externally, and his prayers are straightforward conversations with God about whatever is on his mind at the moment. As he found his way through grief, one of the tools most helpful was worship. At any given moment of the day or night, he might be heard singing old hymns, contemporary praise choruses, or “Jesus Loves Me” with tears rolling down his cheeks.

After those first few days home as I regained the power to be alone, I found his tool one that calmed my desperately frayed nervous system. The song that I most often turned to goes like this:

I worship you, Almighty God.
There is none like you.
I worship you, O Prince of Peace.
That is what I want to do.

I give you praise
For you are my righteousness.
I worship you, Almighty God.
There is none like you.

There is none like you.
No one else can touch my heart like you do.
I could search throughout eternity long
And find there is none like you.

I seldom made it past the second line before choking on tears, but somehow the act of looking beyond myself, of acknowledging that I had no idea how to bear such pain, how to understand what had happened, brought peace. It was a choice. I didn’t always feel like it, but those moments of worship kept me afloat when the grief wrapped around my feet and threatened to pull me under like dead weight.

Eventually peace would return and I could go on.

I carried a picture in my mind of coming to an altar, like one an old testament priest might use to offer a lamb or a dove. And on it, I laid my pain, my grief, my tears.

Some might question this image. In fact it brings up questions for me even now. Had God required some almighty sacrifice from me? Had he taken Allison? Why was this thing required of me, of my family? And there are always those ready to hand out judgment, like Job’s friends, saying this was God’s punishment. They might not say it to your face, but the whispers get back to you.

I wish I had answers for all those questions. I can only tell you that, both then and now, I chose to believe God was good, that he loved me, that he cared about this pain, and that he understood, even though I didn’t.

It gave me a place for the pain. It honored the suffering. It ushered peace into my soul. And that was enough.


  1. I believe that what we personally need will be there, what ever it is. Your description of laying your pain at the altar. It's a clear description of the thinking during that time. Thank you Doraine.

  2. I saw your song and smiled--it's one of my favorites as well. And we're singing it this Sunday.