It’s not the weight you carry but how you carry it.
There is a way to carry grief.
Once you get knocked over by it, once you finally stand up, you look ahead to the years without that one you loved so very much, and wonder how you will live without them.
When I watched the days my father slipped away from this life, try as he may, conscious of wanting to live for family and friends, he could not.
Grief is like that. You can’t live for others. As much as you love them, your heart is torn in two. Particularly, the pain of losing a child is like no other. It is so very deep, it doesn’t help to hear you have to live for your other children. You want to. But your broken heart consumes your mind.
I think grieving is very close to dying.
The dying slowly drift away until there is a sudden wakefulness when the mind says to live. Then dying takes over once again.
But grieving is not dying, even though it feels just like that. And how we feel is not always indicative of what is absolutely true.
God gives us the ability to carry the weight of pain and suffering. Our willingness to let him is our part.
There will be a day, an hour, when you feel a gentle nudging. You will probably brush it away. Allowing ourselves to feel the pain makes us fight. And that fighting keeps us going.
Yet, God gently nudges us again until eventually, we are brought face to face with a choice: how we will carry the weight of pain and suffering.
When we stay in a fighting position, whether passively or aggressively, we become used to coping this way. It feels like an intrusion when truth gently brushes our deeply painful heart. And if we’re honest, we know exactly where that truth is coming from. For some of us, whether we realize it or not, we may be angry with God, the truth giver, for not explaining why he allowed this. Why he saves some from accidents, sickness, and death – and didn’t save mine.
When the worst day of my life came to my doorstep, I felt like I was drowning. I could not think of anyone else if I wanted to. The physical pain was so intense, so overwhelming, I wanted to die.
I am thankful for those early days of friendship and love. But then everyone goes home and life goes on.
Here is when the seeds of anger, resentment, bitterness, depression, and so much more can settle into a vulnerable, broken heart.
And at the right time, God nudges.
Joy and sorrow dwell together in this world. We are not victims of sorrow because God made a way to carry it. Not only that, but we have hope in his promises of eternity.
The Bible tells us to trust the Lord with all our heart and not to not rely on our human understanding. When we acknowledge him, he guides and directs us.
I chose to do that even though what I was feeling was nowhere near trusting God.
This is how we carry the weight – no matter what it is.
We can see God as an unfair, confusing, unpredictable entity who allows pain and suffering and is not to be trusted or believed in for that matter.
Or we can choose to see God as one who is ready to comfort, guide, and show us how to carry the weight through the pain and suffering in life, even when we don’t understand why it exists.
It’s okay to limp through life. I don’t believe for one second the mindset of some Christian streams of thinking/teaching/preaching who claim otherwise. I cannot look at photos of my son. I cannot listen to certain songs. I avoid stories of when he was here. I avoid places that make it worse. I avoid people who make it worse.
I live life differently and I have been absolutely amazed how God has let me know how close he is to me. Some little ways and some big ways. Thing is, no one can take that away from me. It is so personal to me, I can’t help but feel loved.
I hope you will respond to the nudges to your heart of trusting in a God who knows you don’t understand, but will help you in ways you won’t believe.