Grief is a strange companion really. It lingers like an unwanted house guest who makes your world out of order and chaotic. It's a thief who comes to rob you of your hopes and dreams and discards sorrow and depression at your door. Grief comes like a current. And when the big swells peak, it feels like you are about to crash into a dark, lonely, bottomless pit for all of eternity (like the kind from Indiana Jones).
Grief is unpleasant, but it's no stranger to me. For weeks I have been agonizing over my sister's failing condition. Grief has tried to suck the life out of me, but only gotten away with a lot of my creative mojo, energy, and alligator tears. Because of this, I haven't felt like writing. And also because I just don't know what to say.
I am hurting. My family is hurting. Hurting like we've never hurt before. Everything feels wrong, feels like a dream, no a nightmare. It feels surreal. Strangely I haven't been angry, only crushingly sad. Sad for how we are watching her change and deteriorate each day. Sad for the life she is missing out on. Sad for the pain that is ebbing from all our hearts. And yet even in the midst of this seemingly torrential grief, I see a dim light at the end of this grief tunnel. That dark pit I described was not in fact bottomless, but somehow leading to... hope. Yes, hope. And the only conclusion I can come to as to why I see hope at the end of all of this is because of Jesus.
Jesus is the reason hope exists and it is through him that I know things will one day be different for us all. One day there will be no more death because he conquered it. There will be no pain because he finished it. There will be no sin or debt because he paid for it. Because of Jesus, hope is really my lifelong companion and I am only visited by grief. And so today, and everyday after until I enter eternity, I will cling to the hopeful promises of Jesus and wait for the waves of grief to subside.
"The Lord is close to the brokenhearted and saves the crushed in spirit." - Psalm 34:18
"Whom have I in heaven, but you? I desire you more than anything on earth. My flesh may fail, my spirit may grow weak, but God remains the strength of my heart. He is mine forever." - Psalm 73:25-26
"So we do not lose heart. Though our outer self is wasting away, our inner self is being renewed day by day. For this light momentary affliction is preparing for us an eternal weight of glory beyond all comparison, as we look not to the things that are seen but to the things that are unseen. For the things that are seen are transient, but the things that are unseen are eternal." 2 Corinthians 4: 16 - 28