Grieving the loss of a loved one

Losing a loved one

Losing a loved one is hard and can take many years to heal. Sometimes it never heals, but the pain lessens over the years.
You cannot take the loss of a loved one lightly. But faith helps you. I write this subject with some examples and warnings.

Sometimes we are "happy" because God ends the person's suffering and that if the person was really a believer in Jesus Christ, we know that he or she now has a better life in heaven.
But if he or she was not a believer, only our prayer can help ease the pain of your lost one.

I was "happy" after my father died. He had brain cancer and doctors gave him two months to live. But God gave him 6 months and he accepted Jesus Christ as Savior and 2 weeks later he died. Thanks to the Lord.

Job was sad after his seven sons died. On top of that he received great suffering and his wife spoke ill of God. The three friends gave bad advice and Job, in God's order, had to make sacrifices for them. But not for his wife, because God understood her hurt. And God gives her 7 new children!

We need to take care of our wordsin comforting

The most horrible thing I heard was
The mentally handicapped son of a pastor of a large church committed suicide. Several members commented that this son was now in hell because of his suicide. How can "believers" say that? They based it on the sixth commandment "Thou shalt not kill". That is true? This son had a severe mental handicap, he possibly did not even know what he was doing.
Look at King David, first he committed adultery and then fully consciously premeditated the death of Uriah, the husband. Is King David in Hell because he broke the Sixth and Seventh Commandments?

Please watch your words, only God is the judge.

One day, my neighbor visited me. I was still single and alone. "Please help me and explain why my son died?" She was not a believer. What did I say? One night when I was babysitting her son, he said that he saw monsters on the wall in his room. At this time, I was still innocent, and I did not know about demons in the Netherlands. The son, 9 years old, died because of a bus that passed through a red light. His brain was outside his skull.
What do I say? Tellin about these monsters, that now he was free? That death is a consequence of sin? I was speechless and only spoke to her for half an hour. I sat across from her.
Take care (do not fall into Satan's gap) not to embrace, that can cause more problems (Going to be intimated).

One day, a pastor and I were visiting a woman. Afterwards, the pastor was angry that I spoke little. I had no words. Weeks later the pastor informed me, that the woman was grateful to me, because in prayer I said everything she said. Sometimes consolation is just listening.

We do not have much knowledge of God. Many brothers and sisters have died during the Covid-19 pandemic. We do not know why? Sometimes I think it is because we live in the end time and many can suffer in our time and not resist temptations. Of which, only God knows!

Be careful not to lose faith

Here is another story, this time of a "believing" mother. From the age of 4 the son had cancer. For a while he was cured, but at the age of 6, cancer entered the spinal cord. Several months later, he was admitted to the University hospital. The mother stayed many days and nights with him. The boy was happy, a great witness of Jesus Christ, even though he knew he did not get cured and after months he died. The marriage ended many years later, the mother spent hours near the boy's grave. She complained a lot to God. Calling God to account. Her daughter married someone from Islam. Another 28-year-old son is on drugs, and he did not get married. And a Buddha image in the toilet. A very sad story.

Other times, children lose their father at a young age and the mother is left with the children, having to deal with financial problems at times. Remarriage does not help because you are unable to "forget" your deceased husband.

Another couple is "happy" for their daughter who died at age 10 and now the daughter is happy in heaven. From birth she was blind, deaf and dumb, epilepsy, barely feeling when her skin when people touched her. Needed tube feeding. Church people helped intensively. BUT her flaw was still there.

How can we help?

PRAY for the person. Be aware. Help take care of the children. Be there for him or her. Don't leave it alone. Do not forget about the person (even after years).

Biblical Texts

Psalm 23:4

Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me.

At some point in life we ​​all go through difficult times, sometimes literally through the valley of the shadow and death, it can be our own death or that of a loved one or another extraordinarily difficult situation. Even in these moments we must remember that the Lord is with us, here in this verse He affirms it. No matter how much fear surrounds us, no matter how alone you feel, but believe me, the Lord is with you, his word never lies.

Psalm 34:18

The Lord of the brokenhearted is near, and saves the brokenhearted.

A brokenhearted person is one who easily weeps over his sins and truly repents of each one of them. A person like this also tends to easily sympathize with the pain of the other. unfortunately this is not what we are living. Our eyes are dry. We pray little. We cry a little. We claim little for our country. We are insensitive and with a hardened heart.

The biggest problem with this is that God only approaches, that is, he is only with those who have this broken heart. God is with you? Do you have a broken heart?
Why do we need a broken heart?
Because it brings us closer to God! This is the main reason.
Because the men of God in the Bible were like this: David (Psalm 6:6),Jeremiah (Lamentations 1:16),Jesus (Luke 19:41)
Because that's how the word teaches us.
The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit; a broken and contrite heart, O God, you will not despise. Samos 51:17.

Psalms 119:50

This is my consolation in my trouble, that your promise revives me.

David relates positively the divine promises with human suffering: “In suffering, I was comforted because Your promise gave me life.” (Psalm 119:50).

From listening to election campaign speeches so much, we become skeptical of the word “promise”. Most of the time, electoral promises are not fulfilled when the candidate takes office. David, however, put his hand in the fire, in the face of divine promises. The poet king had no doubts: the security of his troubled life was maintained to the end because of Jehovah's sustaining promise. What God promised he always fulfilled.

Living the Christian life is a challenge. Because of our weaknesses and sins. Because of the wickedness of the world. Because of “the fiery arrows of the Evil One.” Believing in the reality of divine promises should not be our last resort. It must be our initial posture, our attitude of facing tribulations. This is one of the reasons to know the Bible. The Lord's promises are in the Scriptures, plain and simple. Believers without a Bible suffer unnecessarily. For them, David's recipe applies – "in my suffering I was comforted because your promise gave me life!".

Isaiah 43:2

When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; when by the rivers, they will not submerge you; when you walk through the fire, you will not be burned, nor will the flame kindle in you.

In this verse, God is telling the Jewish people that He will be with them in their most difficult times, supporting them through them, giving them strength to go beyond them and getting them out of harm's way without harm.
When you pass through the waters. — This is a general promise, and means, that whenever and wherever they pass through water or through fire, he will protect them. For, this is true of his past history with the people; and the assurance here is for consolation in view of the calamities and sufferings in Babylon. Fire and water are often used in Scripture to denote calamity.
When you go through fire. — This is expressive of calamity and danger in general, as passing through fire. It did, however, have a literal fulfillment in the case of the three pious Jews cast by Nebuchadnezzar into the fiery furnace Daniel 3:25, Daniel 3:27.
By fire and water he means every kind of misery to which we are subject in this life; for we must contend not only with calamities of one kind, but with calamities infinitely diversified. Likewise, the Apostle James exhorts believers not to faint when they “fall into various temptations.” (James 1:2). And, indeed, faith needs to be tried in many ways; for it often happens that he who was victorious in one combat was frustrated by another kind of temptation. We are, therefore, tried by afflictions, but finally delivered; we are perplexed by the waves, but we are not swallowed up; we are even burned by the flames, but not consumed. We have, indeed, the same sense of pain as other men, but we are sustained by the grace of God and strengthened by the spirit of patience, so that we do not lose heart; and finally he will reach out his hand and lift us up.

Isaiah 49:13

Sing, O heavens, and shout, O earth, and you mountains, break out for joy, for the LORD comforted his people, and had compassion on his afflicted ones.

Sing, O heavens — In view of the glorious truths declared in the preceding verses, that kings would arise and princes would worship; that the Messiah would be a light to the Gentiles, and that true religion would be extended to each of the four quarters of the globe. The idea in this verse is, that it was a time when heaven and earth would have cause to rejoice together. Thus it is common in Isaiah to interpose a song of praise at the announcement of any great and glorious truth, and to exhort heaven and earth to rejoice together. , he also seeks to confirm the promise which might have been regarded as doubtful; for afflictions trouble our consciences, and cause them to waver in such a manner, that it is not so easy to rest firmly on God's promises. In short, men remain in suspense, tremble or fall completely and even faint. While they are oppressed by fear, anxiety, or grief, they hardly accept any consolation; and therefore they need to be confirmed in various ways. This is the reason why Isaiah describes the advantages of this deliverance in such lofty terms, that believers, though they have seen nothing but death and ruin, may yet hold up their hearts to the hope of a better condition. Accordingly, he sets the matter almost before their eyes, that they may be fully convinced that they will have the most abundant cause for rejoicing; though at that time they saw nothing but grief and sorrow.

Isaiah 57:1-2

The righteous perishes, and there is no one to care for it; compassionate men are carried away, and there is none who understands. For the righteous is taken out of calamity, he goes into peace; all who walk uprightly rest in their beds.

The righteous perish - This refers, as I suppose, to the time of Manasseh (see Introduction, Section 3). Grotius supposes it refers to King Josiah; which refers to martyrs in general. But it seems to me probable that the prophet intended to describe the state of stupidity which prevailed in his time, and to ask as a proof of it, that the pious part of the nation was taken away by violent death, and that the nation was unaffected by it. Such was Manasseh's guilt; so violent was the persecution which he provoked against the righteous, that it is said of him that he shed much innocent blood, till he filled Jerusalem from one end to the other' 2 Kings 22:16. There is evidence (see Introduction, Section 2) that Isaiah lived down to his time, and it is probable that he himself was a victim of the race of Manasseh. Though he had, on account of his great age, retired from the public functions of the prophetic office, yet he could not be insensible to the existence of these evils, and his spirit would not cause him to be silent, even if bowed down with age, when the earth it was full of abominations, and when the nation's best blood was spilled like water. The word translated 'perish' (abad) as well as the word translated 'taken away' (âsaph) denotes violence and is indicative of the fact that they were removed by an untimely death.

AND THERE IS NO ONE WHO UNDERSTAND - no one is aroused by it, or is troubled by it. The sentiment of the passage is, that it is proof of great stupidity and guilt when people see the righteous die without concern. If the godly die by persecution, and others are not awakened, it shows that they either agree with it, or have no confidence in God, and are unwilling that his people should be preserved; if they die in the common way and people are not affected, it shows their stupidity. The withdrawal of a godly man from the land is a public calamity. His prayers, his example, his life, were among the richest blessings in the world, and the people must be deeply affected when they are taken away; and it shows their guilt and stupidity when they view it with indifference. The evidence of this guilt increases when, as it sometimes is, the removal of the righteous by death is an occasion of rejoicing. The wicked hate the secret rebuke which is furnished by a holy life, and they often feel a secret exultation when such persons die.

That the righteous are taken away from the evil - What dreadful calamities are coming upon church and nation, and that the righteous are taken away before they come. He shall enter in peace - The righteous man will be received into rest and safety, where he will be beyond the reach of approaching miseries. They — The merciful men; shall rest in their beds — In their tombs are not inappropriately called a bed or a sleeping place, death being commonly called sleep in Scripture; every one walking in his righteousness — Who walked, that is, lived, in a sincere and faithful discharge of his duties to God and men. Vitringa thinks that "the fulfillment of this prophecy is to be sought in the late ninth and succeeding centuries; when the papal power greatly prevailed, and the corruption of the church was as great as the persecutions and troubles of the godly were many".

Lamentations 3:32

Though he grieve a man, yet he will have compassion according to the greatness of his mercy.

Verses 31 to 33 are the key to a correct understanding of the entire book of Lamentations. They are the revelation of God's love behind all the suffering He has allowed to befall His children. The Lord does not allow adversity without evaluating human conduct. Although God allows affliction sometimes, it is also true that human beings invite it. Chastisement, to God, is His “strange work” (Isa. 28:21). In His sovereign providence, God sometimes “allows evil to occur that He may prevent still greater evils from arising.

When, therefore, the faithful feel assured that their punishment is only for for a time they lay hold on hope, and thus receive inestimable comfort in all their ills.

Matthew 5:4

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

Blessed are those who mourn – This is capable of two meanings: or those who are blessed who suffer the loss of friends or possessions, or that those who mourn for sin are blessed. When Christ came to preach repentance, to induce people to bewail their sins and to forsake them, it is probable that he had a particular eye on the latter. Compare 2 Corinthians 7:10. At the same time it is true that the gospel can only give true comfort to those who are in affliction, Isaiah 61:1-3; Luke 4:18. Other sources of consolation do not reach the deep sorrows of the soul. They can lessen the sensibilities of the mind; they may produce a gloomy and grudging submission to what we cannot help: but they do not point to the true source of comfort. Only in the God of mercy; in the Saviour; in the peace that springs from the hope of a better world, and there alone is there solace, 2 Corinthians 3:17-18; 2 Corinthians 5:1.

1 Corinthians 15:55-57

Where, O death, is your victory? Where, O death, is your sting? The sting of death is sin, and the strength of sin is the law. But thanks be to God who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.

  1. "Where, O death, is your victory?"
    Paul is talking to "death" as if it were a person. This is the cry of triumph over death that Paul thinks Christians will give when the time comes when death can no longer steal their mothers, fathers, sisters, brothers, daughters and sons. Death has the power to put Christians in the grave, where they are imprisoned. When death is abolished, Christians in the graves will rise from the dead, come out of their graves, and be released into eternity.
  2. "Where, O death, is your sting?"
    Death has the power to cause pain and destroy Christians, but after it ceases to exist, it no longer has that power. Christians will no longer fear death. Some commentators take "sting" in this context to mean the "sting" of a snake, scorpion, or bee, and also to mean the sting of the iron point of a sting. An ox goad was a long weapon 7 to 8 feet long with a sharp iron point used for handling oxen. It could be used to guide the oxen to move in a certain direction, or with more force like a spear if necessary.

The resurrection is the ultimate victory over sin and death. These twin woes have haunted man from the Garden of Eden to the present day. But the resurrection will make it possible for the supreme redemptive work of God to be truly experienced by the saved. As soon as the saved receive this new body, the Word will have been fulfilled: Death is swallowed up in victory (54).

In the victory of the risen body, the sting of death will be removed, because the sting of death it is sin (56). Sin produced death and also added to it the poison and bitterness of despair. Paul declares that the power of sin is the law. The law intensifies sin in the sense that it makes man aware of sin and increases its power and guilt, yet it makes no provision for victory over it (Rom. 7:7-13; 8:2-3). But God… through our Lord Jesus Christ (57) gives us victory over sin and death. The whole redemptive plan was designed to bring about this total triumph.

Victory over sin is so intertwined with the resurrection that to deny one is to deny the other. If the resurrection does not exist, there is no possibility of victory over sin. If there is to be complete and absolute victory over sin, then resurrection is a must. For Paul, victory over sin and the reality of the resurrection represented the height of redemption.

2 Corinthians 1:3-4

Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our tribulation, that we might be able to comfort those who are in any affliction, with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God.

We are comforted because we are afflicted. We are comforted because we need a blessing. We are comforted to comfort others. While each of the above statements is true, the last one is the most crucial. There is something about consolation that cannot be fully realized until it is shared with someone else. It is that final step in the healing process of grief, disappointment, hurt, and loss. Until we share the consolation we receive, until we pass it on to another, our consolation is weak and superficial and limited. Consolation, pass it on to another!

Hebrews 4:16

Let us therefore come boldly to the throne of grace, that we may receive mercy and find grace to that we might be helped in due time.