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RECLAIMING JOY: Coping with Grief

Updated: Jan 24, 2022

It is said that “Grief is the price we pay for love.” If you live long enough, you will inevitably have to face the reality of coping with grief after a loved one passes away. This can be a very difficult time as you strive to come to terms with the emotional pain associated with losing someone you love. You may seek distractions from time to time, which is natural. It can be a good thing to take a mental break every now and then in order to maintain your emotional and spiritual well-being. However, just remember that grief is patient. It will be there waiting for you once the distractions are removed. There are no shortcuts or distractions that will help you circumvent the grieving process, but there are things that can provide some comfort as you go through it. And rest assured that with time, the support of caring people in your life, and prayer, and even some counseling, if necessary, you will make it through the dark valley of grief and reclaim your joy.

Although your loved one may be physically gone, it is not uncommon to still speak to them. Some people state that they even feel the spiritual “presence” of their loved one from time to time. This is totally normal and to be expected, because although they are no longer physically present, their memory will always remain with you. Your loved one’s presence will always be felt to some degree because you will forever carry them in your heart. Allow yourself to lean into what your heart is feeling and embrace it if it brings you comfort to do so.

As you navigate this emotionally difficult time in your life, you must remember two very important points. The first is although you may feel lonely in your grief, the truth is that you are not alone. One of God’s enduring promises is that God will never leave us nor forsake us. Hold on to the promise that God loves and cares for you and has likely demonstrated that love by placing very loving and caring people in your life to support you through this challenging time. It is easy to miss God’s presence in our everyday lives because we so often forget that his presence is not only in the glorious events of the universe but is active in life’s ordinary moments as well. God’s love is most often demonstrated not through supernatural means, but through the actions of ordinary people that God has placed in our lives. If you have special people in your life who have come to your side to help you get through this time of loss, realize that you may be experiencing God’s blessings in the midst of your sorrow. These special people, who I like to refer to as “earthly angels,” will not eliminate your grief, but their caring presence can be likened to a spiritual balm that aids your healing by providing spiritual and emotional comfort to your soul as you go through the grieving process. Don’t be afraid to lean on them for support. After all, that is why God placed them in your life. And, secondly, if given the opportunity to speak to you now, your loved one would likely want you to know that his or her hope and prayer for you is that you would remember them fondly but that you would also go on living a joyful life.

Lastly, just because your loved one has physically passed away doesn’t mean you have to stop talking about them. Talking about your lives together, sharing stories and memories, can be very comforting. More importantly, it can play a role in your healing. Allow this to be part of your healing process. Sometimes we’re afraid to talk about our loved ones who have passed on because we are afraid that others will be made uncomfortable by this. However, a true friend, one of those “earthly angels” whose friendship has been source of comfort and companionship for you in the past, will most likely be welcoming of your need to talk about these things and will probably also enjoy reminiscing with you, especially if they knew your loved one. Also, consider joining a support group. There you will be able to speak with others who have suffered a similar loss in their lives and are going through what you are currently going through.

In closing, everyone is unique and goes through the grieving process at their own pace. With regard to the duration, there is no one-size-fits-all time frame. It can take time to run its course. Be patient with yourself, but also be willing to get professional help if you are feeling hopelessly stuck in your grief and find that you are unable to successfully deal with this challenge on your own. As you continue along the path to healing, and ultimately reclaiming your joy, I wish you God’s comfort and the peace that surpasses understanding.🕊

—𝓡𝓮𝓿. 𝓡𝓮𝓷𝓮́ 𝓕𝓻𝓪𝓷𝓬̧𝓸𝓲𝓼

Psalm 34:18

"The Lord is near to the brokenhearted and saves the crushed in spirit."

Matthew 5:4

"Blessed are those who mourn, for they shall be comforted."

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