Thursday, January 9, 2014

The Grief of Today

I am experiencing grief today because I learned a long-time friend has died.  Grief seems to come  more often these days.   Maybe it's because I know more old people, now that I am old, too.  I am also experiencing grief because of the serious illnesses of two young children from our church.  Then just before evening, I learned of two military helicopter crashes today that took the lives of several of our brave military personnel who volunteered to the duty of training and serving to protect our citizens. 

Everywhere we turn, we find in our own lives, or in the news stories about the world we live in, there is plenty of proof that grief escapes no one.  We hurt on the inside because of the suffering which surrounds us.

I am thinking about grief tonight because one of the blog sites I read this morning was written on the subject, which probably prompted me to thinking about it most of the day.  That site was quick to point out there is even a book in the Bible devoted to grief, and lament.   It's the Book of Lamentations and the blog made reference to the following verses, found in Lamentations 3.

"I have become the laughingstock of all peoples,
.               The object of their taunts all day long.
                He has filled me with bitterness;
                He has sated me with wormwood.
                He has made my teeth grind on gravel,
                And made me cower in ashes;
                My soul has no peace;
                I have forgotten what good is.
                So I say, “My endurance has perished;
                So has my hope from the LORD.”

I am glad those were not the only verses they quoted.  Not too many verses later, Lamentations says,

"But this I call to mind,
                And therefore I have hope:
                The steadfast love of the LORD never ceases;
                His mercies never come to an end;
                They are new every morning;
                Great is your faithfulness.
                “The LORD is my portion,” says my soul.
                “Therefore I will hope in God."

It's God to the rescue again.  I will confess to you that I do not enjoy writing about grief and sorrow and things negative.  The point is, these things are a part of the lives of each of us.  What does give me joy is the opportunity to point myself, you, and any others experiencing grievous times, to God who loves us, gives us hope, and extends his mercy. 

Yes, Lord.  Great is your faithfulness.  You, God are my portion.  My hope is in you.


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