Grief is a word that conjures up images of sadness, despair, and even fear. Grief is a word no one wants to endure. We can experience grief over the death of a loved one, a broken relationship, the unexpected loss of a job or career, a medical diagnosis, a broken trust, unmet relationship expectations, and the list can go on and on. Grief and what brings us to the state of grief looks and feels differently for everyone.
Several years ago it was brought to my attention by my trusted psychologist, that I had a fear of grief. At first I thought that was absurd. How can I be afraid of a “feeling?” After talking about it for a while, I knew she was correct. I was afraid of grief! I was terrified to allow myself to experience the depth that comes with grief and sorrow.
Since early childhood I had been conditioned (unintentionally) not to show many emotions outside of joy and happiness. I learned at a young age to stuff fear, disappointment, anger, and pain deep inside my heart. This behaviour unfortunately led to co-dependent patterns and people pleasing approaches that ultimately led to an abusive unhealthy first marriage.
I have since learned that while grief is not pleasant it is also not something to fear.
Five Facts About Grief
1. Grief is an emotion that God created...there is a time and a purpose for every season and emotion in life.
2. Everyone experiences grief at different levels...there is not a right or specific way to grieve or to experience/feel it.
3. Jesus Himself allowed grief, sorrow, and mourning into His life. ( John 11:33-35, Matthew 21:12-13, Matthew 27:46)
4. Grief is a process. There is not a specific pattern, length, or solution for grief other than to go through it. Each situation is unique. Each person will go through the process differently.
5. Ignoring, diminishing, or trying to avoid grief or sorrow does not make “it” go away.
Give yourself the grace to grieve. Seek support and prayer from trusted sources. Lean into your faith and know that at times it may not feel like it but, “Blessed are those who mourn, for they shall be comforted (Matthew 5:4), "And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose"(Romans 8:28), and "The Lord is near the brokenhearted." (Psalm 34:18)
There is an appointed time for everything. And there is a time for every event under heaven—A time to give birth and a time to die; A time to plant and a time to uproot what is planted. A time to kill and a time to heal; A time to tear down and a time to build up. A time to weep and a time to laugh; A time to mourn and a time to dance. A time to throw stones and a time to gather stones; A time to embrace and a time to shun embracing. A time to search and a time to give up as lost; A time to keep and a time to throw away. A time to tear apart and a time to sew together; A time to be silent and a time to speak. A time to love and a time to hate; A time for war and a time for peace. Ecclesiastes 3:1-8
Click HERE to listen to David Crowder's song Come As You Are
Click HERE to read more about Complicated Grief
Click HERE to read more about Understand the Grieving Process
There is always HOPE!