Friday, February 14, 2014

Don't waste your grief

I met with a dear, lovely woman for brunch several weeks ago. She is lovely, and she is devastated. She lost her son to cancer in December. My heart drops every time I learn of a new member joining "the club no one wants to be a part of." However, meeting these shattered women and giving them hope and comfort is, I believe, what we (those of us who have "been there, done that") must do.

I could never have imagined the large number of new friends I'd make along this journey of child loss. Yet meeting new friends isn't the incentive for reaching out to these new members of the "club." It is the fulfillment of 2Corinthians 1:3-4:

"Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our affliction so that we will be able to comfort those who are in any affliction with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God."

As the LORD has brought healing and comfort to us over the past 2 1/2 years, I am now able to reach out to others who are in need of that same comfort I received at the beginning of the journey. Scripture tells us that God does not waste our suffering, but instead turns our mourning into joy, our weeping into laughter, our ashes into beauty, and our spirit of heaviness into a garment of praise. God has given me the treasures of darkness (Isaiah 45:3) in grief, and I do not want to waste my sorrow.

I've been told that the honest outpouring of my grief through this blog has been a source of comfort for many. I am humbled and so very grateful to God for giving me this outlet, not only for myself, but for others. My purpose in blogging is several-fold: 1) to point people to Christ/God, 2) to be completely transparent about the reality of my loss, and 3) to give glory to God for the healing, help, hope, and comfort that only HE can give. 

The very name of my blog, however, defines that those reading it are only getting a glimpse of grief (and healing) through the "window." A window is just that - a small part of a bigger picture. Blogs, by nature, give a very one-sided view. Obviously, 95% of the time I blog, it's in the tough moments, the moments when grief overwhelms and ambushes. I'm not blogging the 95% when life is good, when routine is humming along and the "daily" is happening. I choose to show the view from this "window into grief" because I believe that without honesty in grief, there is no validity to healing. Grief is a season, however. The view from this window will change, be it ever so slowly. As diamonds are mined in the dark with great difficulty, the journey from mourning to joy is traveled with great exertion through a dark and deep valley.

With painstaking slowness the black curtain of grief rolls back, revealing a sky laden with color. The Master Artist unveils the canvas of our lives with each stroke of His brush. He sees the whole picture, and there is a reason His Sovereign hand has allowed my loss. My loss wasn't my choice, but my response to it is. We all have a choice about what to do with grief. We can be like Job's wife and say, "Curse God and die!" Or we can be like Job, who "fell to the ground and worshiped...nor did he blame God." Jason Gray has a line in his song "With Every Act of Love" that says: "God put a million, million doors in the world for His love to walk through. One of those doors is you." I want to be that door. Or rather, a wide-open window.

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