Thought for the Week - 4th OctoberVanda Hopkin
Matthew 5: 4
‘’Blessed are they that mourn: for they shall be comforted’’
We recently received the sad news that a member of our church family had died and this saddens us. During this time of COVID-19 there are many people experiencing bereavement. I have noticed a lot more information circulating about what support is available for those who are struggling. Bereavement or grief can have a huge impact on a person, and some carry it around for the rest of their lives. Grief is an intense sorrow over the loss of someone, it brings sadness, misery, anguish, distress, and deep pain. It is part of life, and every one of us will face it at some point. If we don’t handle it properly, or we try to bury or hurry it, it can change us into someone we were never meant to be. Grief can be a monster, it is heart-breaking, but Christ knows and understands, He wept after Lazarus died and His heart was moved.
Christ was ‘’a man of sorrows, acquainted with deepest grief’’ (Isaiah 53:5). He bore the crushing burden upon His back and was acquainted with our grief. In this there is hope for us as Christians, in that grief doesn’t need to overburden and overwhelm us, but neither do we have to try to bury it or push it to the back of our mind. Christ is the burden bearer, He comes to bear our grief, and we need to open every part of ourselves up to Him so that He can bring healing.
Every one of us bear grief. It is not always from death of another, but can be connected to all sorts of things, past, present, and future. It might be for the lives that could have been, illness and not being able to do things or move the way we used to. We can grieve for careers, relationships and finances, perhaps it is for children that have not come to Christ, childhoods that we didn’t have, hopes and dreams not achieved, or watching a loved one’s personality diminish through dementia. So many of us are grieving over some part of our lives, but Christ says come and be healed, it doesn’t have to be a monster anymore, it doesn’t have to have a grip on us.
Open up to Christ today, however painful it is, and yes painful it can be, but He says He will not let it overwhelm you. He is here to heal you, to walk with you as you open up to those deep deep feelings you are not able to face, and those deep pains you cannot look at and have had to bury for fear they would overwhelm you. Christ is here to walk with us and bring His comfort and healing. He knows our grief, not just empathetically, but He’s in it with us. He feels it when our heart breaks open, and in those sobs that come from deep within, He says my child let them out and let me in to heal your pain.
We can turn to others and support groups, and they can be empathetic, perhaps had similar experiences, but they can’t be in it with us, they can’t really help, only Christ can. Only He can gently take us by the hand, shield and comfort us in our grief and pain, and bring complete healing.