This is part one of a blog series on grief I wrote several years ago. I hope it encourages you in some way. I apo
If someone had told me years ago that I would be a grief expert, I would have tilted my head to the side and given them a surprised but doubtful look. But because of my journey over the last four years filled with many days of great sorrow, my expertise, as I claim, is not due to specific education but the actual education that only experience brings.
There are so many things I have learned while on this journey. But what was profound to me was how grief wants to linger.
Many times, there has been no warning as I become overcome with emotion. I go from a warm day full of blinding sunshine, singing along with the radio, to what feels like a dark cold wintery day, with tears streaming down my face. A song, a smell, a place, something triggers my senses and memory, and I am saying goodbye all over again. I have spent days and nights wondering why sorrow won’t leave me alone.
I have also discovered whenever you bury someone or even bury something—a relationship, a career, good health, etc. You end up burying some of yourself. Someone once said, “any man’s death diminishes me.” It’s as if the human- race resides on a giant trampoline. All can feel the movements of one. And the closer the relationship, the more profound the exit. When someone you love dies, it affects you, and it affects your dreams.
Grief continues to linger, I believe, because I am not just dealing with memories; I am dealing with unlived tomorrows. I am not just battling sorrow—I am battling disappointment and anger. And anger lives in sorrows house—anger at self, at life, at the hospital, etc., and God. Anger can manifest itself in different ways, but it also takes on the question of why? Why him, why her, why now, why us.
The are many scriptures that brought me great comfort while I walk this trail of distress, but I also want to be perfectly honest with you. There have been times I don’t want to hear another Bible verse. Because of grief, my perspective is fogged, and I want more than a scripture; I want an explanation! And because I don’t understand, I start entertaining doubts in my faith. But guess what? God knows that! He knows what I am feeling, and He knows what I need. He doesn’t let go of me. No, God is hurting with me. He knows my heart is broken and the surmounting fears that are washing over me. But God also knew I was going to feel this way. God is full of grace and compassion. And He wants nothing more than to hold us, care for us, and wants us to choose to embrace Him.
Besides the Lord being our Comforter, Prince of Peace, He is a Strategist. The Lord wants the body of Christ involved with each other. God has no intentions of us walking through pain or joy by ourselves.
Even though there are no magic words that can be said to me or you to make the hurt stop, but I can tell you something that strengthens all in some way. JUST SHOW UP! You don’t have to stay long; you don’t have to bring anything either, but showing up means you are walking with them on this journey; they are not alone. Someone saying, “I am so sorry. I know how much you loved him/her, and how much they loved you,” can be strengthening. Receiving a card can be reassuring they are not forgotten.
I will tell you this; however, the gift that keeps on giving, the strength that keeps on strengthening, which has and continues to get me through over 12 losses in 4 years (9 of those in 3 years), is being grounded in God’s Word. Looking back, I see how God prepared me to know His character, His ways, His truth, and His great promises.
Listen to His whisper about going to church, studying the Bible, getting involved in a Christian community. Listen to His whisper to accept Him as Savior.
I will continue my series on grief next week, but until then:
Ecclesiastes 3:1, 4
There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under the heavens: a time to be born and a time to die, a time to weep and a time to laugh,
a time to mourn and a time to dance,
Psalm 23: 4
Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death,
**Key word—through,— and it is just a shadow.
The Lord is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit.