For Those Who Weep

This book is the story of my very real struggle with suffering. Before I was a Christian, I never questioned “why?” As a young teen, I was incarcerated in the Milwaukee County Juvenile Detention Center. Homelife had been terrible; this was much worse.

In the book, I share some of the steps I took to try to understand God in my life, eventually leading to a desire to be a clergy man in the Lutheran Church–Missouri Synod. I tell people that I was called from “prison” to pulpit. Christian “love” was my real struggle. I wanted to know what it really meant.

Then September 2012, my wife, Elaine, broke a hip. Soon after complete recovery, she broke the other one. After that, Alzheimer's set it. Watching her die a bit at a time over an almost eight-year period, I was torn apart and wondered why a loving God allowed this to happen to her and to me. I questioned his love, looked for answers, then I began to understand why a tender forgiving, loving God would allow this to happen. I call what I learned a “divine diamond.”

Spiritually, I rediscovered the phrase, “God Is in Charge!” Though it helped me spiritually, physically I was a wreck, still not completely recovered two years later. (This next sentence is not in the book.) At age ninety, I do golf three times a week, work out at the gym after golf, and am regaining some of my strength.

I never let the reader forget that I am “chief of sinners” who is fiercely loved and cared for by my God.

The “divine diamond” helps me look for ways I can be of service and is a guiding light. I've limited what it means to me in the book because I believe each of us who weep need to find our own “diamond” and how it can be used by others. Suffering is a real discovery time best left to each to find.

--Rev. Richard Ames

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