Lifeline To Coping With Loss — Morning Devotions - Hope 103.2

Lifeline To Coping With Loss — Morning Devotions

There are very few emotions or struggles that compare to the experience of loss. How do we recover and live on?

By Chris WittsFriday 28 Jul 2023Morning Devotions with Chris WittsFaithReading Time: 1 minute

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In my working life, plus into retirement. I’ve conducted many funerals, and some people say that must be difficult, but I haven’t found them to be so because it’s part of my work, where I have met a lot of people who’ve had to arrange a funeral. I’ve shared with them during a time of loss and sorrow. Some people have a long time to prepare for loss, like the lady I met whose mother had suffered with 14 years of dementia. And that’s a long time to prepare for someone’s end.

And there’s a sense of relief when it does come, so we’re all different. But one thing is certain that we will experience loss of some kind. Someone has said that grief is hard on our bodies, spirits and brains, and they were correct. Loss is a difficult, painful experience. Don’t let anyone tell you it’s not. And as you go through life, you will experience loss in many shapes and forms. You will lose loved ones, relationships, important opportunities, property and security. Getting older may not appeal to you very much. You may have been shocked at the change you’ve seen in those that you knew in their youth, and their appearance has changed so much. The decline, physically mentally, is quite upsetting. So I’m saying today you can’t get rid of loss because that’s not how it works.

So in some way, I think we need to embrace our loss. I’ve spoken before on this program about the popular and gifted English author CS. Lewis. In his twenties, he was an atheist but eventually found faith in Jesus Christ in 1931 helped by his friend JR Tolkien. He wrote many amazing books and novels, and he married late in life in 1957 finding happiness with his wife, Joy.

But three years later, sadly, she had bone cancer and Clive Staples Lewis went through intense grieving, and he went on in 1961 to write a remarkable book, ‘A Grief observed’, sharing his struggle with grief At Joy’s death. He was angry towards God, and he shared his confusion in print. The one theme is that each person’s grief is unique. A wise person has written about grief. In this way, grief can be overwhelming. It affects the way you feel how you sleep, every one of your relationships and the way you think about the future. It’s hard just to get out of bed in the morning, and every task feels like a heavy burden. The crushing feelings of helplessness, fear and isolation seem relentless.

And when you feel like you’re drowning in grief, let your faith be your lifeline.

And here is the key thought for this morning in your loss. Let your faith be your lifeline and some of us go through stages of grief over a long period of time and others process grief quicker. There’s no exact formula on how to grieve, and we don’t need to measure how we grieve. Because mourning is an extremely personal journey with many highs and lows, and finding God in grief is the greatest resource to heal. How does God comfort us when we grieve well? His presence surrounds us and always guides us back to hope. It’s not a superficial hope or denial, a real replacement for the emptiness of loss to the fullness of his love. And that’s the best result in finding God in grief. Now, like CS. Lewis, we can be angry with God as we transition through grief.

Megan Devine wrote, It’s OK that you’re not OK. And in the book, she says that grief is simply love in its most wild and painful form. It is a natural and sane response to loss, but I want to say that God will support and walk beside you and surrounding you with a peace that surpasses all understanding. Finding God in grief is the best way to hold on to your faith and to recover from the loss of someone or something that we’ve lost. Losing your beloved pet dog, for example. That can be a devastating loss.

But what if you’re not coming and talking about your feelings? Following the death of Saul and Jonathan, David in the Bible composed a highly emotive dirge in which he poured out his grief. This mournful composition eventually became part of the written record of the Bible Book of Second Samuel. You can see it in Second Samuel, Chapter one and 2 chronicles 35. No one can stop this loss, but we can learn that finding God in grief is the best way to grow closer to Jesus. While experiencing true healing, we can read the words of Jesus in Matthew 11 – “Come to me all you who are weary and burdened and I will give you rest.”

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Let’s Pray

Heavenly Father, we do find it difficult to cope with loss in whatever form that takes. But we also know, Lord, that holding on to you and your promises is really the only substantial and long lasting way to cope with this. And I thank you for your love and your care in this time of loss. Amen.