Saturday, May 31, 2014

Good Grief

As I sit here, I know of one family is grieving over the loss of a child. As far as I know she was a healthy little 9 month old until an accident. In times like this, is it hard to imagine the depth of grief that family and friends must be feeling. The father of this little girl was my teacher in college. I can picture him teaching, but the type of grief he is experiencing, I do not know. 

In times like this, I can look at his grief from the perspective that I know. I can look at what the Bible says about grief. It says we should not sorrow as those who do not have hope. We can pray that this family who has lost their little girl will have "good grief." Even as Christ grieved over the loss of His friend Lazarus and the sorrow that his friends were experiencing, He knew the end. We know the end as well. As Christians, we have hope for eternal life. This hope helps us no matter what grief we may be facing. 

The Bible also gives an example of grief and how it was poorly handled. The friends of Job are a wonderful and awful example of helping someone through grief. Their initial silence I believe was what was most helpful to Job. God appraised Job as a man who steered clear of evil. Despite the fact that he was a sinner, he was also a good man. Trials do not necessarily mean judgment. Job's friends did not understand this. We must understand this if we are ever to encourage those grieving. 

Sometimes silent grief alongside an individual is what is needed. Time makes the difference. The first 6 months or so of my son's life were those silent days. That is not to say that those who spoke or tried to help were offensive, but everyone has a period where silence is needed. It will likely differ for each individual. If you are alongside a friend, you will know when the time is right. 

Whether the grief is over the loss of life or it is some other loss, help them to experience good grief. A verse that has often come to mind over daily griefs is Romans 15:13, "Now the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, that ye may abound in hope, through the power of the Holy Ghost." 

No comments:

Post a Comment