Today a community is grieving the tragic loss of one of their own.
I am well acquainted with the loss of friends and family, each one has left a huge hole in my heart, and the grieving process is never easy. However, twice in recent years the news of a tragic loss has impacted me like none other.
A little over three years ago the message was delivered via a text.
I’ll never forget the impact of those words, it was as if someone had punched me in the stomach and knocked the wind out of me. Waves of nausea washed over me. My ears began to ring and my vision went dark, I thought I was going to pass out.
Still gasping for air I dropped to my knees and began to pray but words eluded me. I heard a sound I didn’t recognize. There it was again. I’m still not sure whether it was an audible sound or that I simply heard it in my spirit, a groaning that seemed to come from my heart. All I could eek out was ” Oh God!”
Today was the same.
Earlier this morning the phone rang, and my daughter’s voice quivered as she delivered the tragic news.
As word is getting out and the body begins to absorb the news, I’m finding once again that my response is not uncommon.
Person after person is telling me of being weighed down with an incredible mantel of grief that nearly crushes the very breath out of them.
Heaven is being bombarded with the intercessory prayers of the saints, begging for mercy, peace and comfort for those who are left behind. Sometimes with words, sometimes with deep, deep groaning.
Once again we join the fellowship of suffering by all who knew her, groaning under mantles of mourning.
For the second time I’m wondering…
Could it be in that weeping and carrying the mantle of mourning, that we are allowing those who are suffering to “breathe” and take care of business. That is until the time comes when they are taken by the hand by the God of all comfort to walk them through – Piercing their darkness with His love, Healing their broken hearts, Turning their mourning into joy again!
If that is true, I’m all in!
In closing, I am reminded that we are called to a life of both weeping and rejoicing—but with a twist. Romans 12:15 challenges us to look outside ourselves to the needs of others. We are to, Rejoice with those who rejoice, and weep with those who weep.
Here’s the twist!
If we rejoice only in our own successes, we miss the wonder of celebrating the power of the Lord, who desires to accomplish His purposes in and through others as well.
If we mourn only our own losses, we miss out on the opportunity of “being there” for those who are hurting by showing them compassion and therefore making God known to a hurting world!
Life is filled with the extremes of joy and sorrow, victory and defeat. But we have been given the privilege of entering into those moments in people’s lives to see the grace of God at work.
Don’t miss it!
I leave you with this thought.
There is HOPE in Christ for both the family and the community! This is the only thing that can calm our grieving hearts.
In the same way the Spirit also helps our weakness; for we do not know how to pray as we should, but the Spirit Himself intercedes for us with groanings too deep for words; and He who searches the hearts knows what the mind of the Spirit is, because He intercedes for the saints according to the will of God. 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 8:26-28
To read previous blog click here Joy Comes in the Mourning!