Loss. Sometimes it comes quickly, at other times it comes slowly. However it may come, it exposes the deepest most vulnerable parts of our hearts. It has done so for me. In these moments I see that God is calling me to live my life without something I never thought I could live without; but when I remember I have Him, I have the only love, family, security, wealth and health I really need and cannot lose. Easier said than done, but never the less true.
Sometimes loss comes in multiples and it can feel like God is killing me slowly, when he’s actually saving me. I can’t quite feel it yet but I am beginning to understand that I can not really lose something that was never mine in the first place. However, I can hold something that is God’s and honor it, if I remember it is ultimately His.
Ps 119:75-77 (msg) “I can see now, God, that your decisions are right; your testing has taught me what’s true and right. Oh, love me – and right now! Hold me tight! Just the way you promised. Now comfort me so I can live, really live; your revelation is the tune I dance to.”
In my grief and loss God reveals what and who I really turn to for comfort. Sometimes, it’s not Him right away. In grief it is easy to allow Satan to cast doubt on God’s love and faithfulness. God is saying no to one thing and I can jump to him saying “no” to everything. He says no to one thing and I doubt everything. I can fall into the sin of self-pity instead of crying out to Him to hold me.
Jb23:10 “ He knows what he is doing with me, and when he has tested me, I will come forth as pure gold.”
God gives me gifts in all seasons, but these gifts are not safe to hold until I’m willing to put God first. When I do not, that which is precious turns to ash and the comfort it could have brought only brings more pain.
Is 42:16 “I will turn the darkness into light before them and make the rough places smooth.”
God’s love is so overwhelming if I just claim it. It is the biggest and most dangerous lie that anything else can bring us comfort in our moments of hardship, no matter what those hardships may be.
Thomas Merton, author of No Man Is An Island said it best,
“We neither suffer alone nor conquer alone, nor go off into eternity alone. In Him we are inseparable: therefore, we are free to be fruitfully alone whenever we please, because wherever we go, whatever we suffer, whatever happens to us, we are united with those we love in Him because we are united with Him.”
In my suffering, I am not alone. The things I think I am losing, it’s just God calling them and me back to himself. The pain and grief I feel is real and I am not the only one who has ever felt it. God has felt it more than any other, ever. He knows the anguish of loss and heartache better than any and he opens up his arms and calls me to come in closer. He knows what I need if I will just turn to him first and let Him hold me.
Matt6:8 “…for your Father knows what you need before you ask him.”