Loss, grief, pain and good-byes are all a part of life. In our culture today there is little time for whiners, or weakness. We are taught a young age to suck it up and move on. We value strength, self-reliance and a strong will.
But is this the biblical way of doing things? I would have so say no. God has created us in His image and as such He has given us a healthy way to express sadness. We see that in the life of Jesus in one of the shortest verses in the bible, “Jesus wept.” God wants us to grieve. One of the things that I have come to realize is that everything that happens to us causes change.
I once worked with a woman that had lost a child three days after birth. I overheard one of the mourners say, “I just hope she can get past this quickly and get back to normal.” Hearing that caused my heart to hurt. The truth is that woman will never go back to being who she was before that loss, and she should not even try. Embracing the grief and allowing the loss to be real will change or destroy anyone going through it, but it will never allow us to go back to what we were before it happened.
I said good-bye to my second son, Joshua, this week. I sent him off to Navy boot camp. While I am still processing the grief and the loss myself I have come to the conclusion that I will never be the same again. My son will most likely never live in my house again. Christmas, Easter, Thanksgiving will all be a bit smaller now. As I sit in my chair in the morning drinking a good cup of coffee and looking at the pictures of my children on the wall I know I will shed a tear or two.
This does not deny the fact that I am intensely proud of my two older sons, one is a Captain in the Missouri National Guard and now my second son serving on active duty in the Navy. I am excited for them but mingled in with all of this is a sadness that I am struggling to put into words.
I know that God wants to walk with us through these moments of loss and grief. When in the midst of the trial we often want the pain to go away, for Him to work a miracle, make everything right again. In reality God is not in the miracle business (not to say He does not do miracles) rather He is in the transforming people business. This is why He recorded the fact that He wept at the death of a friend that He was planning on resurrecting anyway.
Loss, grief, pain and good-byes are part of His plan to change us. When that happens we should allow God to walk with us through the trials, in the end we will be stronger and more in love with our savior.
A final word for my son as he seeks to serve, “May the Lord bless you and keep you; and make His face to shine upon you and be gracious to you; may the Lord lift up His countenance upon you and give you peace.” (Numbers 6:24-26)
Pastor AL Weeks and his family serve the fine folks of First Baptist Church of Kenai. FBCK is a warm fellowship of believers that are committed to speaking the truth in love. Please join them this Sunday morning at 10:45 a.m. for a time of amazing worship.