Friday, February 16, 2007

going to God with grief

Tonight my thoughts have been consumed with the grief of a friend. She poured her heart out to me tonight, and all I want to do is make her feel better.

But of course...

Nobody on earth can just fix grief.

I prayed, I read my bible, and I prayed some more for God to help me to reach out to her in a way that might somehow be helpful. I really wish I was better at this sort of thing but the truth is that this is just not my strong suit.

I decided I would google for scriptures connected with grief. But before I did, I had the strongest urge to hear a song. A song I have on my computer. The song is by Rascal Flats, who are not a Christian group, they just have good songs. The stranger thing is that the song "Stand" isn't one I ever intentionally pick at home, or in the car. Before tonight I didn't even know the name of the song, nor did I know the lyrics. Earlier today I heard the first few seconds play on someones myspace page before I went to another page and the song got cut off. I didn't pay attention to the words, but the tune lingered.

So I found it on my computer however many hours later and played it...

You feel like a candle in a hurricane
Just like a picture with a broken frame
Alone and helpless like you’ve lost your fight
But you’ll be alright, you’ll be alright
Cause when push comes to shove
You taste what you’re made of
You might bend ‘til you break
Cause it’s all you can take
On your knees you look up
Decide you’ve had enough
You get mad, you get strong
Wipe your hands, shake it off
Then you stand
Life’s like a novel with the end ripped out
The edge of canyon with only one way down
Take what you’re given before it’s gone
And start holdin’ on, keep holdin’ on
Every time you get up and get back in the race
One more small piece of you starts to fall into place
This song just struck me as one of those "your gonna make it" songs we tell ourselves in rough times. It seemed to have a bit of His touch to it as well. So I looked at a few of the other song lyrics on the same album and discovered a favorite of mine. It's called "He ain't the leavin kind". I always thought it was about a husband or boyfriend, but tonight I discover it's about God.

And there He goes, another grand slam hit outa the park. I am just amazed at the meaning these songs carry and the exact timing He delivers this.

And maybe by now your realizing I don't believe in coincidences.

**************************************

I found some scriptures after I heard the song.

I'm not the one grieving but they even gave me comfort...

The Father of mercies and the God of all consolation·consoles us in all our affliction.
~2 Corinthians 1:3,4


When Jesus saw her weeping...He was greatly disturbed in spirit...Jesus began to weep.
~John 11:33,35


They who wait for the Lord shall renew their strength, they shall mount up with wings like eagles.
~Isaiah 40:31

******************************

And during all this someone left a comment on one of my posts tonight. It got me checking out some of the other posts at the top of the page I've written and I see my post about the Godwinks book. The post about all of us having to go through the valley. The post about just holding on and relying on God to get us through the other side, because he's right there with us. And to be watching for his "winks" of reassurance along the way.

I haven't even thought about that post or this blog in over a month.

And He delivers yet another relevant answer to my prayers.

*****************************

Talk about Godwinks. He heard my prayer and lead me straight to some great things to roll my mind around in. Some of this I may share with her, and some I may just keep in mind. I suppose He'll lead me through all that too.

But I'm convinced He's been sitting over my shoulders tonight.

Wow, I love Him.

****************************

I found all sorts of other scriptures I thought I would share. Keep in mind this is what I found in a few hours, including the song lyric detour. This of course means there are tons of other scriptures that would be helpful - if you find them, I would love you to share them with me.

He heals the brokenhearted and binds up their wounds. ~Psalm 147:3

Approach the throne of grace with boldness, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need. ~Hebrews 4:16


Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts ~Colossians 3:15

I love you, O LORD, my strength. The LORD is my rock, my fortress and my deliverer; my God is my rock, in whom I take refuge. He is my shield and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold. ~Psalm 18:1-2

Find rest, O my soul, in God alone; my hope comes from him. He alone is my rock and my salvation; he is my fortress, I will not be shaken. My salvation and my honor depend on God; he is my mighty rock, my refuge. Trust in him at all times, O people; pour out your hearts to him, for God is our refuge ~ Psalm 62:5-8

Your love, O Lord, reaches to the heavens, your faithfulness to the skies. Your righteousness is like the mighty mountains, your justice like the great deep. O Lord, you preserve both man and beast. How priceless is your unfailing love! Both high and low among men find refuge in the shadow of your wings. ~ Psalm 36:5-7


Psalms 32:10 Many are the woes of the wicked, but the LORD's unfailing love surrounds the man who trusts in him.

Psalms 103:16-18

the wind blows over it and it is gone, and its place remembers it no more. But from everlasting to everlasting the LORD's love is with those who fear him, and his righteousness with their children's children - with those who keep his covenant and remember to obey his precepts.

Jeremiah 3:19-21

"I myself said," 'How gladly would I treat you like sons and give you a desirable land, the most beautiful inheritance of any nation.' I thought you would call me 'Father' and not turn away from following me. But like a woman unfaithful to her husband, so you have been unfaithful to me, O house of Israel," declares the LORD. A cry is heard on the barren heights, the weeping and pleading of the people of Israel, because they have perverted their ways and have forgotten the LORD their God.

Jeremiah 31:3

The LORD appeared to us in the past, saying: "I have loved you with an everlasting love; I have drawn you with loving-kindness.


Hosea 11:1-11
"When Israel was a child, I loved him, and out of Egypt I called my son. But the more I called Israel, the further they went from me. They sacrificed to the Baals and they burned incense to images. It was I who taught Ephraim to walk, taking them by the arms; but they did not realize it was I who healed them. I led them with cords of human kindness, with ties of love; I lifted the yoke from their neck and bent down to feed them. Will they not return to Egypt and will not Assyria rule over them because they refuse to repent? Swords will flash in their cities, will destroy the bars of their gates and put an end to their plans. My people are determined to turn from me. Even if they call to the Most High, he will by no means exalt them. "How can I give you up, Ephraim? How can I hand you over, Israel? How can I treat you like Admah? How can I make you like Zeboiim? My heart is changed within me; all my compassion is aroused. I will not carry out my fierce anger, nor will I turn and devastate Ephraim. For I am God, and not man - the Holy One among you. I will not come in wrath. They will follow the LORD; he will roar like a lion. When he roars, his children will come trembling from the west. They will come trembling like birds from Egypt, like doves from Assyria. I will settle them in their homes," declares the LORD.


8 comments:

Anonymous said...

I've been grieving over the lose of my very best friend for more than eight months. We shared a very unique and special Mother, daughter relationship. I lost my real Mother when I was eight years old, and have searched my entire life for her. By the grace of God, I found Mom at age 43. She was everything I needed, and more than I ever hoped for. She was a good Christian woman, a mentor, someone I was proud to be with. She was my friend, my Mother. I miss her so much. Although I know she would want me to be happy, I have no joy without her. I feel as though I'm living in this never ending vortex of grief and solitude and confusion. Despair has all but consumed me. My heart is broken in a million pieces, hence, the equivalent of a million heartaches squeezing the life out of me. And it hurts something awful. I've never felt so lifeless and without purpose. I do believe a person can die of a broken heart. I lay awake many nights wishing that I could somehow just float away. I'm not afraid to die and pray and beg God often to take me home. As opposed to a cowardly voluntary way, I likened my wish, and pleadings to a spiritual get away so to speak. I feel dead already. Bravery and fortitude have totally exhausted me. I feel thoroughly disenchanted and sickened with life as it is. I'm weary. I read your Blog, and all the scriptures you've inserted to help with grief. Somehow, I feel no comfort. I just sit here crying for Mom. What is wrong with me! I call myself a Christian, but am letting the devil rob my soul. I do love Him so much. Where is He?

Kiana said...

Oh how my heart goes out to you. I'm so sorry to hear about your mothers passing. Mothers are one of Gods greatest gifts to us.

Your mom sounds like she was one of a kind; and what a blessing you were able to have that time with her. With how you described her I bet she would be heartbroken to see you going through such a struggle.

God never leaves us and I know with all my heart he is right there beside you, wanting to comfort you. Go through your grief with him, pray to him each and every time you break down inside (starting right now). He has plenty of time for you and will help tremendously. Keep your faith, and if it's wavering, shut those thoughts out and keep believing he will pull you through this. It probably won't happen overnight but He WILL pull you through this IF you have FAITH in him.

If you have a church family, call on them for comfort and support. If you don't have a church, start looking. I found my church family during some bad times and they stepped right up, because I spoke up and begged for the help. Don't feel ashamed or embarrassed, just step out in faith. And if the first place doesn't have time for you - try another church.

Even though it's been said before I truly believe your mother is a part of you. You can be proud of the traits and habits you've taken from her and carry them on through the rest of your life. With God and the strength she gave you, you MUST use it to put one foot in front of the other and get through the worst of this one day at a time. Do Not Give Up. Your very loved and important, God still has purpose for you here. Let HIM take you when He is ready.

You are, and will be in my prayers - if you need a friend, just ask and I'll leave you with my email address.

With much love,
Kiana

****************

A PRAYER FOR YOU TODAY
This is the beginning of a new day. God has given me this day to use as I will. I can waste it or use it for good. What I do today is important, because I'm exchanging a day of my life for it. When tomorrow comes, this day will be gone for ever, leaving in its place something that I have traded for it. I want it to be gain, not loss; good, not evil; success, not failure; in order that I shall not regret the price I paid for it.
~ W. Heartsill Wilson

Anonymous said...

Dear Kiana,

I'm very glad you wrote to me. Thank you for all the kind words of encouragement. I've read your message and prayer many times over hoping to feel something different, hoping to find just the right line that would inspire me to feel better. But, it just makes me cry. I feel so ashamed. This morning I didn't even go to church. I got up, looked at the clock, and felt nothing. I just didn't feel like going. I never miss church unless there's illness, or the weather is very bad. If you're willing to deal with me, I would like to continue corresponding with you. Somehow I trust you, but not sure exactly why because I don't even know you. Maybe it's your willingness to listen and respond, coupled with the distance that separate us. It just feels safe. I would feel better if we corresponded through e-mail. I feel embarrassed enough knowing that you're probably not the only one reading my post. Thanks for caring.

Warm Regards,
Linda

Kiana said...

Linda,

Don't feel ashamed about crying, it is a tremendous pressure release and very helpful going through grieving. Let God be your anchor through this, keep in constant communication with Him and He'll pull you through this. Contact me at mrs_mclay@hotmail.com anytime.

dennyj said...

I lost my mother 6 months ago after a strong fight with cancer. I feel very connected with your description of who she was to you and how you felt about her. All the "she is in a better place, she wouldn't want you to be sad, etc.." is not comforting, though I know it is the truth. What has been most hopeful-helpful for me is when my sister and were sharing our raw emotions, she reminded me that Jesus "bore our grief, carried our sorrows..." I am a strong believer that Jesus is a miracle healer of the body because He paid the price for our healing at the time of his death, and for 2 years I never gave up hope believing He would heal my mother until He put it on my heart 3 days before she died that He was going to "heal" her in heaven. However, I overlooked His healing power of my grief. How could I be such a believer that He could heal my mom physically, no matter how dire her condition, but fail to remember He bore my grief and sorrow. I have to give Him my grief every morning so I can make it through the day. I refuse to let Satan steal my life from me. It is MY choice to receive the gift of hope and emotional healing Jesus already PAID for me. I, like you, know it is possible to die of a broken heart. While I struggle with the same desires to go home to be with her, I know my purpose is not yet finished here on earth. Grief takes an intense tole on the physical body, which I was unaware of. It greatly affects your nervous system, affecting virtually every part of your physical being. Again, your description of how you feel so mirrors my emotions to losing my mom. I assure you that you are not isolated with your feelings of loss. I FIGHT DAILY for motivation to "live", even though I have 3 amazing teenage kids, a husband and much extended family to live for. Each morning when I open my eyes, before I rise, I say out loud, "I am a child of the Most High God. I walk with His favor, therefore I can do all things because Greater is He that lives in me that he that is in the world." I will not let Satan win.

dennyj said...

I lost my mother 6 months ago after a strong fight with cancer. I feel very connected with your description of who she was to you and how you felt about her. All the "she is in a better place, she wouldn't want you to be sad, etc.." is not comforting, though I know it is the truth. What has been most hopeful-helpful for me is when my sister and were sharing our raw emotions, she reminded me that Jesus "bore our grief, carried our sorrows..." I am a strong believer that Jesus is a miracle healer of the body because He paid the price for our healing at the time of his death, and for 2 years I never gave up hope believing He would heal my mother until He put it on my heart 3 days before she died that He was going to "heal" her in heaven. However, I overlooked His healing power of my grief. How could I be such a believer that He could heal my mom physically, no matter how dire her condition, but fail to remember He bore my grief and sorrow. I have to give Him my grief every morning so I can make it through the day. I refuse to let Satan steal my life from me. It is MY choice to receive the gift of hope and emotional healing Jesus already PAID for me. I, like you, know it is possible to die of a broken heart. While I struggle with the same desires to go home to be with her, I know my purpose is not yet finished here on earth. Grief takes an intense tole on the physical body, which I was unaware of. It greatly affects your nervous system, affecting virtually every part of your physical being. Again, your description of how you feel so mirrors my emotions to losing my mom. I assure you that you are not isolated with your feelings of loss. I FIGHT DAILY for motivation to "live", even though I have 3 amazing teenage kids, a husband and much extended family to live for. Each morning when I open my eyes, before I rise, I say out loud, "I am a child of the Most High God. I walk with His favor, therefore I can do all things because Greater is He that lives in me that he that is in the world." The thought of allowing Satan to win my life from me encourages me to fight this battle to stay alive. Jesus won't "take" our grief away, we must "give" it to Him. It is almost funny, I thought because I was a believer losing my mom was going to be somehow easier for me than for others. I share your feelings, your pain and will pray for you to find the strenght to finish your purpose in life.

Anonymous said...

Thank you JennyJ. I too lost my mother right before Thanksgiving. I'm missing her greatly. I appreciate your sharing your testimony. It helps me. Bless you.

francisco mejia said...

friend! you are a strong individual; hence you being in JEsus Christ! Knowing you have the power to say: Devil be gone and depart from me, is a great sense of relief! Having been born into the new family of christ Jesus you will never be alone even when you think you are..! You still have the greatest family you can always hold on to! Your Christian mother would want you to be strong and encouraged by those around you and by the grace of God! We send out our prayers to you and we pray "that you find the power to over come the hurt that sticks around with you and we BIND SATAN FROM YOU SO THAT HE CANNOT BRING YOU DOWN ANYMORE! WE PRAY THIS IN JESUS NAME. AMEN! GLORY BE TO GOD AND HIS FAMILY!
FRANKIE.MEJIA89@YAHOO.COM
-FRANCISCO MEJIA