“Through love serve one another.” Galatians 5:13

Stonerise Care Blog

The Heavy Weight of Grief

By Pastor David Jones, Stonerise Manager of Chaplaincy Services

“The pains of death surrounded me and the pangs of Sheol laid hold of me; I found trouble and sorrow. Then I called upon the name of the LORD, ‘O LORD, I implore you, deliver my soul!’” (Psalm 116:3-4) “…In my distress I called upon the LORD and cried out to my God; He heard my voice from His temple, and my cry came before Him even to His ears.” (Psalm 18:4-6) “Then when Mary came where Jesus was and saw Him, she fell down at His feet saying to Him, ‘Lord, if You had been here, my brother would not have died…’” (John 11:32)

As a pastor I have had many occasions to minister to people who have lost loved ones and have found each one a time of serious trauma and heartache. But when I think of the multiplied thousands of folks who have lost their lives in the last year due to this virus, in addition to the many who have passed from other conditions, I am truly overwhelmed. They have all left behind family and friends who are wrestling with deep sadness, brokenness, and loss. They are in need of much compassionate care and comfort.

Whether we are fearful of our own approaching death or burdened heavily by the loss of others close to us, the Bible is clear that God Himself is the One we can lean on to help us through these dark valleys. Please consider the following passages.

From a favorite passage, the Psalmist knows freedom from fear from the very presence of God who travels with him in those shadowy valleys of death. He is a loving Shepherd who cares for His sheep, all the days of life and into eternity. (Psalm 23) Isaiah calls the promised Savior a “…Man of Sorrows and acquainted with grief…” and then describes His torturous death and what it would accomplish for all of us. (Isaiah 53)

The writer of Hebrews says, “Inasmuch then as the children have partaken of flesh and blood, He Himself likewise shared in the same, that through death He might destroy him who had the power of death, that is, the devil, and release those who through fear of death were all their lifetime subject to bondage.” (Heb. 2:14-15) Victory over death and freedom from its fearful shackles!

When Jesus was blamed for Lazarus’s untimely death, He dramatically pointed both sisters beyond the realities of physical death, to the guaranteed resurrection and eternal life that was available. Then, seeing all the sorrow around Him, He grieved and wept with them (John 11) before demonstrating His power over death.

Paul wrote that we could know comfort from each other as we anticipate a re-union in the sky someday with our believing loved ones (I Thess. 4:13-18), and to John was revealed a certain future where there would be “no more death, nor sorrow, nor crying….” (Rev. 21:1-4)

For all of you grieving so deeply, may God bring comfort and strength to you in the days ahead as you lean on Him and His Word. Many are praying for you!

For Prayer Today
-Pray often for the multitudes who have been devastated by the losses of loved ones that they will find heavenly comfort and peace from God.

Please email devotions@stonerise.com to receive Stonerise daily devotionals via email Monday through Friday. For more information on Stonerise’s Chaplaincy program including our offerings available to you, visit https://stonerise.com/chaplain/.