This past week, two of our dear church families were touched by the passing of a loved one. Both of these families are people of great faith. Although I have been ministering to people in these circumstances for more than thirty years, it never ceases to amaze me how I can go to be a blessing to the bereaved, and leave as the one who has been blessed. But, I shouldn’t be surprised when those who love the Lord have their faith intact during some of life’s most difficult days, for Paul said:
But I would not have you to be ignorant, brethren, concerning them which are asleep, that ye sorrow not, even as others which have no hope. (1Thessalonians 4:13)
Now let me say that sorrow can be good for us. It can expose forgotten or previously unrecognized areas about ourselves and our relationship with Christ. Sorrow can help us get to know ourselves as never before. It causes us to consider where we are in life, why we do what we do, and what the focus of our life really is.
Sorrow also helps us to clearly see what we believe about God and eternity. It helps us to remember that God understands our sorrow. Jesus, God in the flesh, is described as “a man of sorrows,” intimately acquainted with grief (Isaiah 53:3). Considering His sorrow and remembering His concern for our sorrow, we gain a better perspective about what God is trying to accomplish in us through our grief.
Sorrow is better than laughter: for by the sadness of the countenance the heart is made better. (Ecclesiastes 7:3)
A quote from the devotional magazine “Our Daily Bread” says, “Those who don’t let sorrow do its work, who deny it, trivialize it, or try to explain it away, remain shallow and indifferent. They never understand themselves or others very well. In fact……before God can use us very much, we must first learn to mourn.”
We are blessed when we learn from those who are mourning as well. People who exhibit great faith in times of great sorrow encourage those around them. I thank God for the lessons during our times of great sorrow. You can read more about that in our family’s story here or by clicking on the “Family Info” link on the right side of this page.