I’ve learned that we never get over grief. It becomes a traveling companion as we proceed through our lives. We discover that despite our losses, life does go on.
And one day, when we hear the name of that special someone, and we smile instead of cry, we know we have turned a corner in our journeys. We become grateful for those we have loved, and we want to share that sense of gratitude with the world.
Today I want to share five habits for finding joy as you journey through grief.
Too often, we busy ourselves to avoid facing the obvious, the inevitable. Remember, God is there with us, in the valley of the shadow of death. Psalm 46 describes a refuge, solace in the shadow of His wing. Feel that sense of security. “Be still and know that I am God” (Psalm 46:10, NIV).
Realize you are not alone.
When you feel lonely and scared, realize that God’s Son is standing near, protecting you even from your mental battles. Others have successfully maneuvered their grief journeys, and you will too. Join a faith-based grief support group. You will be amazed at what you have to offer them. “Do not be afraid or discouraged, for the LORD will personally go ahead of you. He will be with you; he will neither fail you nor abandon you” (Deuteronomy 31:8, NLT).
Take care of your well-being.
Learn to care for yourself as you have cared for others. Be patient; there is no timetable for grief. Check-in with your physician and/or a Christian therapist or spiritual counselor for additional help and support, physically, emotionally, and spiritually. “Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light” (Matthew 11:28-30, NIV).
One of the healthiest habits to develop is actively seeking ways to aid someone else. Invite someone for daily walks or a cup of tea, or a game of pickleball; you both will benefit from exercise and fellowship. “For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do” (Ephesians 2:10, NIV).
Trust in God.
I’m learning the more I come to know God, through studying His Word and fellowshipping with other believers, the bigger and stronger my God becomes. “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge him and he will make your paths straight” (Proverbs 3:5-6, NIV).
Psalm 23 has encouraged countless generations of believers struggling with mighty troubles – and it’s as true today as the day King David wrote the words. We need to remember that God promises to refresh our souls, to guide us along the right paths. Even in the darkest valleys, we don’t fear evil because God is always with us. His goodness, mercy, and love will follow us all the days of our lives until the day we go to dwell in the house of the Lord forever, surrounded by our loved ones.
I’d love to hear from you, and together we can discover how to find joy along the journey.