Getting Through Life’s Losses

Last week I shared a post about the 6 stages of grief. Today’s post is from the the next sermon and a follow up to the last post – all related to the stage of sorrow.

The stage of grief can apply to anyone: it might be death, but it could be any loss. Loss of a job, a dream, finances, relationship – the list really does go on and on. I wish I wasn’t in this stage, but this sermon really is beneficial for future stages of sorrow I will face as well. Being that I have never gone through something as tragic as this, it’s been a blessing to hear how to go through the process as well as what to expect. Of course the process is different for everyone, but my hope is that this is a blessing to someone else as well.

Lessons Learned About Grief

1 – Loss is unavoidable, but grief is a choice

  • Our lives and the world around us are constantly changing. With change comes loss. With loss comes pain. It’s how we deal with the pain that is a choice.

2 – Grief is healthy

  • Grief is a tool God created to help us get through. Grief is a painful emotion to deal with, but it is also the most helpful.
  • The worst thing we can do after or during a loss is repress or suppress – both which involve blocking out the painful loss. If we don’t let it out in healthy ways, we are going to act it out in unhealthy ways

3 – God grieves with us

  • Not only did God give us the ability to grieve, but he grieves with us.

“When Jesus saw Lazarus’ sister sobbing, and saw how all those with he were crying also, his heart was touched, and he was deeply moved… Then Jesus started crying. ‘See how much he loved Lazarus!’ they said.” John 11:33-36

“The Lord is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit.” Psalm 34:18

4 – Grief is healed in community

  • God created us to be in relationships. He walked with the 12 disciples for a reason, don’t you think we should do the same? During times of loss allow other people to bless you.

Carry each other’s burdens, and in this way you will fulfill the law of Christ. Galatians 6:2 

When others are happy, be happy with them. If they are sad, share their sorrow. Romans 12:15

5 – Grief takes time

  • Grief doesn’t last for just one day, it’s a season that we go through it. Grief helps us to not skip over the loss, but to get through the loss. We can’t get past the pain until we acknowledge it and accept it.

There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under heaven… a time to weep and a time to laugh, a time to mourn and a time to dance.” Eccles. 3:1,4

How Do We Move Forward?

1 – List the losses

  • List all the losses you have encountered. Whether it happened yesterday or 10 years ago it’s still healthy to go through the process.
  • Don’t let fear keep you from going through the grieving process.

Blessed are those who mourn, for they will be comforted. Matt. 5:4

Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for you are with me Psalm 23:4

2 – Have the courage to lament

  • Lamenting is showing a passionate expression of grief to God
  • Don’t complain about God – complain to Him – He can handle it. Share with him your emotions.
  • 65 of the 158 Psalms are Psalms of lament. If you don’t know what to read Psalms is a great place to start. Here are some Psalms of lament: 3-7,9,10,12-14,17,22,25-28,31,35,36,38,39,41-44,51-61,64,70,71,74,77,79,80,82,83, 85,86,88,90, 94,102,109, 137, 139-143,145

3 – Ask Jesus to heal your broken heart.

  • Jesus came to heal our broken hearts. Ask Him to heal yours.

The Lord is like a father to his children, tender and compassionate to those who honor him. For he understands how weak we are. Psalm 103:13-14

Jesus: “God has sent me to heal the brokenhearted…” Luke 4:18 

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13 Comments
  • Megan Davis
    Posted at 07:29h, 16 April Reply

    I love how this helps reminds us that we are not alone in our actions and feelings! It is such a good reminder that it is OK to grieve! I know, as believers, so often we want to immediately be able to say we have complete joy and trust in the situation, but it is OK to have those tender moments when we completely cry out to the Lord! Thanks for sharing this!

  • Marianne
    Posted at 07:39h, 16 April Reply

    Thinking of you and your family daily. Hugs!

  • Evangeline
    Posted at 10:57h, 16 April Reply

    Caroline, I really appreciate that you share from your heart. Thanks for showing us how to not get STUCK in grief. This helps us recognize that God is right there with us, always desiring that we allow Him to tenderly love us THROUGH it.

  • Kari
    Posted at 11:07h, 16 April Reply

    I am truly inspired by you and your heart. Thank you for always sharing what is on your heart. Your blogs, ministry, and encouragement are helpful to me as I’m sure they are helpful to so many others. Thinking of and praying for you and your sweet family.

  • Kara
    Posted at 11:12h, 16 April Reply

    this is one for the devotional you are going to write someday 🙂 Thank you for choosing to push through the pain you are feeling to help others through their pain! xoxo

  • Erika B.
    Posted at 15:44h, 16 April Reply

    This is really good, thanks for sharing, friend. Having the courage to lament– that’s tough.

  • Amy
    Posted at 20:32h, 16 April Reply

    Thank you for sharing what is helpful and what you’re learning! This is great advice! Praying for you!

  • jennifer prod
    Posted at 20:39h, 16 April Reply

    your posts about grief and loss are always so inspiring and truthful and necessary in the blogosphere. and your bit about community healing grief? i’ve found that it works just as well in blogging communities – finding similar people to share experience and healing with 🙂

  • Kim Adams Morgan
    Posted at 10:23h, 17 April Reply

    What a wonderful list, Caroline. Grief and loss are part of life for everyone. No matter how many times we have to go through them, it doesn’t seem to get easier. Faith can make all the difference in the world. Thank you for sharing your heart and helping others walk through these hard times. One day when Christ returns, we will only know joy and Light. No more pain and sorrow.

  • Emily @ EatLoveProcreate
    Posted at 18:41h, 17 April Reply

    Isn’t it crazy how sorrow can present in so many life experiences and that it’s truths remain constant across those experiences? Love your tips on dealing. No doubt vocalizing all of this has got to be the best thing you can do, and of course you’re helping others…as usual. Love you girl. Thinking of you. xo

  • Jen
    Posted at 20:48h, 17 April Reply

    This is a helpful and concise list of grief. It’s similar to what I went through when I lost my Grandma last year. It’s still incredible to me that God grieves with us! I know that this blog post will bless and help many people who have lost someone.

  • Jennifer | The Deliberate Mom
    Posted at 11:16h, 19 April Reply

    This is lovely Caroline. I went through a period of deep grief back in January/February, this would have helped so much back then. I’m pinning for reference… because undoubtedly, in life, we face grief several times over.

    You mentioned lamenting and it made me think of how I wrote my own lamentation. I really felt it helped heal me.

    You have such a beautiful spirit Caroline. I will continue to pray for you and your family.

    Blessings my friend.
    xoxo

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