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Well, I survived the one-year mark of Dennis’ home going. Truth is I don’t even know where this past year has gone. Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday of this week were spent backtracking the events that led up to his death. I didn’t plan it that way but I found myself continually looking at my watch and thinking back as to where I was and what I was doing during that almost 3 day ordeal. It was like watching an old movie clip. This movie clip left me broken hearted. At some point I remember thinking, “He is really not coming home!” There is no way to explain to anyone the pain and emotional deficient from this kind of sudden loss.

I woke up Thursday Morning and I lay in my bed and just thanked God for a new day. I thanked him for holding me up over these past 12 months. I thanked Him for all the people he put in my life to act as His hands and feet. Those who sat and listened as I talked and cried, those who gave me hugs when I needed them, those who sent cards long after the funeral and those who have continually prayed for my strength and peace. I’ve learned that true friends are your friends even when it doesn’t look pretty.

There is a verse in 1Peter 5:10 that says, “But may the God of all grace, who called us to His eternal glory by Christ Jesus, after you have suffered awhile, perfect, establish, strengthen, and settle you.” Those are beautiful words to fill a broken heart. I love the part of that verse that mentions strengthen and settle you. Those were both things that I began to pray for early on. I found very quickly as I’ve mentioned before the only way you survive this kind of loss and pain is to depend solely on HIM.

Some days you literally beg to just breathe. You try to get to a place where the breeze can rush across your face and you can slow your heart rate down. You hope that soon, you can feel your arms and legs again.

I told someone the other day this has been the worst year of my life BUT in many ways, it had been the best. “How could that be”? You might ask. I’ve learned so much more about GOD and His word and I’ve learned so much more about myself. Things I needed to know and some things that hurt to know. It’s almost been like being able to see inside my life from the outside looking in and see how God went before me in this tragedy. The trips Dennis and I took two months before, the intimate conversations we had, the things he shared with me a week before he left going back to work, that day at the airport when he called me back and said with such intention, “Baby, always remember how much I Love You. “ Never in 23 years of taking him to the airport had he ever done that. Usually it was a quick kiss and “I’ll see in a few” as he was walking off. Those were the last words I ever heard him speak.

I use to tell people I trusted God but truth is until I lost Dennis I really didn’t understand the full meaning of that. Trusting God completely means having faith that he knows what is best for your life, expecting him to keep his promises, knowing that He will help you with your problems and that He can and will do the impossible when necessary. Have you ever really trusted GOD like that?

As I have experienced brokenness He has continued to reach in to heal me and as I have felt loneliness He has continued to walk with me. I have written many things through this journey, shared my heart and soul. Some of you I’m sure have thought too much and some have ask for more but I’ve written only as the Holy Spirit has led me to, so I have to believe it’s been just what the “doctor” ordered. I hope that my painful story is becoming a meaningful story.

Nothing really prepares you for the “Battle of Grief” but quickly you realize you must become a Warrior. It takes time…… Days, weeks, months, and sometimes years of training go by BUT then one day you realize that the battle scares exist but they do not define you. You find you have more courage than weakness, more fortitude than fear. You find that you are becoming stronger. As you recede from the battle ground you can still see your shield and sword standing in the corner as a reminder that life is short and you begin to find your days filled with HOPE. Hope is the thread that has held me together. Gazing at the shield and sword you look back on the life you had and begin gazing with hope to the new life before you. You are never the same. You find that you have grown in this HOPE. You’ve found new friends and let go of some old ones. The noise has changed. Life has changed. You have discovered that you are in fact blessed (even in your pain).

Over the past almost three years I began to do some writing again. When my Dad got sick, then my eye ordeal and all that followed I knew that God was slowing me down, molding me and leading me in another direction. Since 2013 I’ve been working on a Blog, an outlet for writing, sharing and encouraging others but never could get settled in my spirit about it completely. I’ve learned through this journey that all things come to fruition in God’s timing. He allowed me to meet this absolutely precious Christian Graphics/Media lady who has spent many hours helping my heart show up in written form. And as an added bonus her last name is Dennis. Yes REALLY… Why was I amazed???

I would like to invite you to sneak on over to www.kathystephens.com and sign up to become a part of my little piece of blog land. I’m excited to see where God is taking HOPE REIGNS.

I hope to see you there as I continue to seek God’s purpose and calling for my life.

Hebrews 6:19 This HOPE we have as an anchor of the soul, both sure and steadfast, and which enters the Presence behind the veil.


  1. Kathy,
    I’m so proud of you! Keep up the good work your way ahead of me . May need your help. Love you girl❤️

    1. GIRL i’ve been learning from you. Certainly not ahead of you. WE are in this together. LOVE YOU

      1. So so proud that you have allowed all the pain to help and touch someone else while you heal… We are overcomes by the blood of the Lamb and the words of our testimony…

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