Grief Lingers

“When Jesus saw her weeping, and the Jews who had come along with her also weeping, he was deeply moved in spirit and troubled. ‘Where have you laid [Lazarus]?’ he asked. ‘Come and see, Lord,’ they replied. Jesus wept” John 11:33-35.

When I found out a good, young friend of mine died this month, the grief lingered like a hidden rip current. I would be swimming through my day at work, untouched by tears, and then a wave of memories would pull me under so fast I couldn’t catch my breath. The harder I fought to rise above it, the more overwhelming it became.

I knew I shouldn’t despair because my friend was a deep lover of Christ, and I know he’s beside Jesus now. Still, I felt I needed to seek out what the Bible says about grieving.

I discovered that Jesus wept over the death of Lazarus, even though he planned to resurrect him moments later. Just because death comes to all humans does not mean it’s part of God’s ultimate plan. Jesus came to spare us from eternal death, but when we find we won’t see a loved one again in this life, it’s natural to mourn that loss. That’s what it means to be temporal, mortal and human.

God, help me to remember that there is more to your purpose than this current life. Give us comfort and hope.