Friday, September 18, 2009

Psalm 23 by King David and On Death by Kahlil Gibran

For Renee

PSALM 23

The LORD is my shepherd; I shall not want. He makes me to lie down in green pastures; He leads me beside the still waters. He restores my soul; He leads me in the paths of righteousness for His name’s sake. Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil; for You are with me; Your rod and Your staff, they comfort me. You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies; You anoint my head with oil; My cup runs over. Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life; and I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever.


On Death
By: Kahlil Gibran

You would know the secret of death.But how shall you find it unless you seek it in the heart of life? The owl whose night-bound eyes are blind unto the day cannot unveil the mystery of light.

If you would indeed behold the spirit of death, open your heart wide unto the body of life. For life and death are one, even as the river and the sea are one.

In the depth of your hopes and desires lies your silent knowledge of the beyond;

And like seeds dreaming beneath the snow your heart dreams of spring. Trust the dreams, for in them is hidden the gate to eternity. Your fear of death is but the trembling of the shepherd when he stands before the king whose hand is to be laid upon him in honour.

Is the shepherd not joyful beneath his trembling, that he shall wear the mark of the king? Yet is he not more mindful of his trembling?

For what is it to die but to stand naked in the wind and to melt into the sun? And what is it to cease breathing, but to free the breath from its restless tides, that it may rise and expand and seek God unencumbered?

Only when you drink from the river of silence shall you indeed sing.

And when you have reached the mountain top, then you shall begin to climb.

And when the earth shall claim your limbs, then shall you truly dance.


My dear, precious blog and life friend, Renee, lost her 25 year old nephew, Sheldon, to a rare brain cancer today and I ask you to pray for her and her family. Sheldon was diagnosed only a few short months ago.


Renee's life-affirming blog is:

http://circlingmyhead.blogspot.com/

Sheldon fought a valient fight, but sadly, lost his short battle. His mother, Jacquie, is in the hospital fighting cancer also. Jacquie is Renee's favorite sister, as she so eloquently blogged about not long ago. Renee is herself a cancer survivor having been diagnosed with Stage IV Inflammatory Breast Cancer in February, 2006. She is in remission and through her blog, she has educated hundreds, perhaps thousands of us on how to live---with her big heart, her wisdom, courage, joie de vivre and wonderful sense of humor.

Knowing Renee has changed my life. She has taught me how to live life more fully, more aware and to keep on keeping on in the midst of hardships, no matter what life throws at me. A book she often recommends and journals about is, "Cancer – 50 Essential Things to Do" by Greg Anderson. I highly recommend it if you or a loved one is battling cancer.

On Friday, August 7, Renee posted the following about Sheldon and I thought it was a perfect example of her warrior heart and a beautiful tribute to Sheldon's gentle, brave spirit. I close with her quote and send her my love, prayers, comfort and blessings---She is truly a friend of my heart......

"I admire Sheldon. I have always loved Sheldon; that goes without saying. But now I know what it really means to truly look up to a person, because, for the first time in my life I look up to someone. Sheldon is 25 years old and has the heart of a lion. And to chaos all I can say is ‘Fuck you. You have been beaten by a 25 year old man with the attitude of a god.'"


"Death leaves a heartache no one can heal, love leaves a memory no one can steal." ~From a headstone in Ireland


25 comments:

Karen said...

Oh, Marion, I am so sorry for Renee and her family. I admire the spirit that allows her to continue in the face of such tragedy. These are wonderful works to post here. xoxox

Marion said...

Thank you, Karen. My heart is broken for our Renee and her loved ones. Love & Blessings to you...

Angela Recada said...

A beautiful post, Marion. I had such a difficult time with my post today. I deleted and repubished a few times. You did a wonderful job here.

It's all so heartbreaking.

Hugs and love to you, dear Marion.
Angela

Delwyn said...

Hi Marion

you have written a fitting post for Renee and her loved Sheldon. I often tell my Beloved of Renee and her family and we consider what life has thrown them but then marvel at her amazing resilience and love...

The Gibran quote is a lovely piece. As my Father fades I am mindful of consolatory words...that are more than platitudes...

Happy days

Judith Ellis said...

"I cried upon the Lord in my distress and he heard me and delivered me from all my calamaties."

As someone who knows intimately the loss of loved ones recently, three consecutively, I know that the above scripture is so very true.

Thank you, Marion, for these beautiful words of encouragment. May God bless this family. I shall say a prayer for this family. God is more than able to comfort us and our words and deeds to help others during this time are also very important.

Thank you again, dear Marion, for your words. here that I know if read by this family will bless them immensely.

Marion said...

Angela, love to you, too. Renee has become such a good friend to me, and also a life teacher. She's like a Zen master, a true, caring Bodhisattva with a heart of pure gold. Love & Blessings to you!

Delwyn, I'm sorry to hear about your Father. I, too, am amazed and in awe of Renee's resilience and wisdom. Glad you enjoyed the Gibran piece. I read him over and over when I was a teen and have found no other writer who can comfort with words as well as he can. Blessings to you, too!

Marion said...

Thank you, Judith, for sharing that beautiful scripture. God is faithful. I know Renee will be by eventually. She's a regular visitor and I know she'll appreciate your comforting words, too. I'm sorry to hear about your own recent losses. It's good to have friends to share your grief with. A burden shared is a burden halved. God Bless You, sweet lady!

Serena said...

I'm so sorry for your friend's great loss. May she find some comfort in the beautiful scriptures shared here.

Bonnie, Original Art Studio said...

What a beautiful and respectful tribute to Sheldon and his loving aunt, dear Renee. It is a comfort to feel the love being sent to Renee. You are the perfect conduit. Thank you.

Woman in a Window said...

For what is it to die but to stand naked in the wind and to melt into the sun? And what is it to cease breathing, but to free the breath from its restless tides, that it may rise and expand and seek God unencumbered?

Shit. Already...
xo

Wine and Words said...

Ouch, heart cry. I haven't heard this song in a million years. Sheldon's story brings to mind another song that hits me hard...Mark Schultz - "He's My Son". I cannot imagine this type of loss but will feel it beyond the knowing when I hear that song. Gutteral response. So much saddness. I'm so sorry Renee.

"I'm down on my knees again tonight
I'm hoping this prayer will turn out right
See there is a boy that needs Your help
I've done all that I can do myself...
If You can hear me
Let me take his place somehow
See, he's not just anyone
He's my son."

Rikkij said...

Marion- DAMN!! this is the first place I've been in over a day. Hadn't heard. Now I must go there and what can I offer my dear Friend that can be enough? I hope to do one tenth percent of the beauty you laid at her feet. I have nothing. just sorrow. Take care and thank you for such perfect words. ~rick

Marion said...

Thanks for stopping by, everyone. I appreciate your love and comments and prayers for Renee. Blessings!

Kelly said...

I know there is really nothing I can say to ease the pain and sorrow.

I've prayed for Renee and her family and will continue to do so.

(((hugs)))

Anonymous me said...

Today I heard about Sheldon and my heart ached ... for Renee ... for Jacqui for their whole big-hearted family. Marion I visit often and never comment. I feel somehow that your wisdom is beyond me. xx Jos

Snowbrush said...

I didn't understand Renee's words about beating chaos. Indeed, I am clueless. I suppose she meant that he faced death bravely, but what chaos means to her, I have no idea.

Marion said...

Thanks, Kelly. I know that Renee appreciates our prayers. Blessings...

Jos, I'm glad you visit often and please feel free to comment anytime. What little wisdom I have comes from life experience. It's nothing special, just ordinary paying attention and trying to pass along lessons I've learned---usually the hard way. Blessings to you!

Snowbrush, I can't speak for Renee, but to me when she said he was beating 'chaos' it meant the illness and accompanying hardship/heartache that has come upon him so suddenly and the courageous way he handled it all. I would have become a blubbering mess had I had a cancer diagnosis so young, yet Sheldon seemed to handle it with grace, even comforting others around him. Thanks for stopping by. Blessings!

Escapist said...

Beautiful said,enjoyed reading it.


joliieess:-)

Marion said...

Thank you for visiting, Escapist. Blessings!

Margaret Pangert said...

Marion, that was a beautiful tribute and elegy. I don't know Renee, but I humbly and respectfully offer my sympathies. With peace and prayers, love and light, Margaret

Marion said...

Thanks, Margaret. Renee is a bright and shining light in blog-land. Blessings!

SarahA said...

Such beauty in your words amongst the tearing of heart strings.Death's cloak always seems that much harder to those not wearing such.




BTW re your last comment at my place:No no no really I am not. I am just a narcissistic scribbler. I do not lie!

Marion said...

Saraha, I still say you have an alchemical imagination, even if you insist you're not a people-reader. You one of my favorite poets ever. Hugs and Blessings!

Renee said...

Oh my life travelling partner. Oh my dear Marion.

This is the most beautiful tribute I have ever seen. I love Gibran and the 23rd psalm will be read by Nathan at Sheldon's funeral.

How kind you are to share my own words back to me, I had forgotten that I wrote that. Not that he is my hero, just that I forgot I had written that.

I love you dear Marion and I am honoured to have you as my very dear friend.

Jacquie came home yesterday and homecare is not in place yet, so Camille, Nadalene, and I were helping her to do what she needed yesterday, poor Jacquie.

Love Renee xoxo

Marion said...

Oh, Renee. My heart goes out to you. You are a warrior, taking care of those around you so unselfishly and lovingly. I'm glad you liked the post.. I felt so helpless, but wanted to post something to try to comfort you. I love you, too, dearest brave friend. I'll continue to pray for Jacquie and your family. Blessings and Love, dearest friend of my heart...