This post is dedicated to JoAnna Lewis, who wore red shoes on her wedding day. JoAnna went home victoriously last December.
Suddenly at the very moment when I mourned [my wife] least, I remembered her best. Indeed it was something better than memory; an instantaneous, unanswerable impression…a sort of unobtrusive but massive sense that she is, just as much as ever, a fact to be taken into account.
–CS Lewis on grieving his departed wife
His wife is. Just as much as ever, she exists. CS Lewis didn’t feel this right after his wife passed away, but when he realized this truth, it changed everything.
I don’t grieve or mourn for Drew now in the way I did initially. Every memory of him that comes to mind no longer brings heartache. I love talking about him. However, I feel that I would somehow limit, or even suffocate, God’s wonderful creation known as Drew if I restricted my thoughts and conversation to the great character that he had or the wonderful legacy he left behind. So I continue to speak of him in present tense and think often about what his life is like now.
Thank God that there came a point where I stopped mourning Drew. When I embraced God’s promises, it allowed Him to turn my pain into praise. I was able to give up sorrow for a spirit of hope and joy—it was at this point that I felt Drew lives! And finally, there came the red shoes. Though not biblical, they turned out to be the cherry on top of my Victory Sundae.
I purchased a pair of red shoes on Black Friday. Nothing fancy. They are most likely a faux suede material. They’re adorned with a burst of sparkly rhinestones at the toes. (Imaginary Convo: Nice kicks, Dorothy. Thanks Dewz. Now take us home.)
Strangely enough, multiple women have approached Anna, my younger sister, and told her what a testimony I bear when I wear these red shoes. Who knew?! Apparently some interpret such footwear is a symbol of strength, power, and determination. I found this humorous at first; now, I can’t put them on without considering, “Do I want to testify today?” I’m encouraged by the thought of whispers; Here she comes stomping on Satan with her red shoes. It makes me smile.
But then I think, well, I should be donning the red shoes, and the spirit of an overcomer, daily. And so should you, if you are in Christ. Regardless of your current circumstance, we have all been declared victorious, so we should walk with that victorious strut. The war has been waged and the blood overcame anything that could defeat us. Satan, the toothless lion, wants me to believe that Drew’s mission and purpose is complete. All that remains is his good legacy, but it’s not.
In 2 Corinthians Paul says, “It is our goal to please God, whether here or there”— meaning whether on earth or in heaven. So I know that is what Drew is doing in heaven—pleasing God through serving, working, worshipping, and any other way God deems fit. Why would God have Drew doing less in the land of more?
Drew lives more brilliantly than before. Because Drew lives, I can live. And not just live to grieve (although there will always be a taste of it), but ultimately, live to celebrate that this world is not our home—that there is life after this to anticipate! So, I wear my red shoes.
If only I could click, click, click my heels and be home already. One day!