9 Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.” Joshua 1:9
Nothing! NOTHING, in life, can prepare us for the death of a loved one. Whether death results from a sudden accident or a sustained illness, it always catches us off-guard. In our case an unexplained cause of death. Death is so deeply personal and stunningly final, nothing can emotionally prepare us for its arrival. With every death, there is a loss. And with every loss, there will be grief.
Grief doesn’t care and go in an orderly, confined timeframe. Just when we think the pangs of anguish have stolen their last breath, another wave sweeps in and we are forced to revisit the memories, the pain, the fear. Sometimes we try to resist the demands of grieving. We long to avoid this fierce, yet holy pilgrimage. We fight against the currents, grieving. We fight against the currents terrified of being overwhelmed, of being discovered, of becoming lost in our brokenness.
Culture tells us to move past this process quickly. Take a few days, weeks perhaps, to grieve, but don’t stay there too long. Grieving can make those around us uncomfortable. Friends sometimes don’t know what to do with our pain. Loved ones struggle to find adequate words to comfort our aching wounds.
Yet grief, as painful a season as it is, is a necessary part of our healing. To run from grief is to run from the very thing that can quell the pain of our loss. English poet and hymnodist, William Cowper, described grief itself as medicine. Greif cleanses the anguish from our souls and set us back upon the path of life so we can dance. Grieving is the process God uses to bring us to a place of wholeness. Grieving is His great gift to us. It is a necessary part of our journey. Healing.
Grieving can be the most difficult time for people. Trying to balance the feelings of pain and loss while going forward with your everyday life. Give yourself space and time, be honest with your emotions, don’t grieve alone, and don’t lose hope.