How to Grieve

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The Israelite nation in Marah are now away from the land of slavery making bricks day in day out; they have space and time to let emotions loose and face their trauma and loss. God has taken us out into the Wilderness to teach us and give us space to change.  Pain isn’t something to push down and ignore – it needs addressing. 

Gerald Sittser the Author of – A Grace Disguised: How the Soul Grows through Loss  describes how he lost his mother, his wife and 4 year old child in a car accident where he was driving. The drunk perpetrator was never convicted because the it could not be proven beyond any shadow of a doubt at the trail that he and not his pregnant wife was driving. He write in his book “However painful, sorrow is good for the soul…The soul is elastic like a balloon. It can grow larger through suffering.”

God does not give us suffering or pain – but He can use what life throws at us to bring our heart increase. Lamenting can enlarge our soul. Many of the Psalms are laments of sorrow and are full of grief.

Ecclesiastes says there is a time to mourn. God can take our tears, take our pain and make us more. He can enlarge our souls through grieving well. Mourning  can teach us compassion and empathy. We know that unless we mourn we cannot be comforted and in fact those that do mourn God will comfort Matthew 5:4.

Some may need to do the same as Nehemiah (1:4) – he sat down, wept, mourned, fasted and prayed. Some may need to read Psalms to express what they feel (try Psalm 43) other will need to just draw near to God and give him their pain. He has taken all our pain on himself on the cross. He has paid for it already so we can give him what it his. He doesn’t fear our pain, he won’t complain but just take it gladly from us.

 How do you Grieve well?

Taken from Grieving and Healing: 5 Steps to Help You Through the Grieving Process. From Sharon O’Brien http://seniorliving.about.com/

1. Learn to accept that your loss is real.

For many people who are grieving a loss, the first impulse is to deny the loss. Grieving denial can range from downplaying the loss, as if it’s not important, to having the delusion that nothing/no-one has been lost.

2. Make it OK to feel the pain.

The pain of grieving can be both emotional and physical, and unfortunately there’s no way to avoid it. Denying the pain of grieving can lead to physical symptoms and can also prolong the grieving process.

Some people try to avoid grieving pain by being busy or traveling; others try to minimize grieving their loss by idealizing the loss/loved one or refusing to allow negative thoughts about the loss/loved one enter their minds. Some grieving people use drugs or alcohol to deaden the pain.

3. Adjust to living without the loss.

When we lose someone/something we also lose the part of our lifestyle that included our loss. Part of our grieving is for the parts of our life that will never be the same.

4. Let go allow yourself to move on.

This task can be especially hard as it can feel at first that you’re being disloyal/lost when you start to think about enjoying a life that doesn’t include the deceased/the thing you have lost.

Learning to cherish a memory or dream without letting it control you is a very important step in the grieving process.

Today: Release your pain of loss and give it to the one who has paid for it already. Draw close to your Father and let him comfort you in your grief. He can and will heal your heart.

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