Friday, November 11, 2005

Dealing with the Painful Loss of a Loved One - By Anna Allen

I had to take a friend to the doctor today and as I sit here in the waiting room about to doze off I begin to write this article. By the way, why do waiting rooms in doctor's offices make people sleepy?

OK, let me get back on track. As I'm sitting here, I hear a lady behind me talking of her past depression. She mentions she felt so lonely after her dear husband passed away. In her own words, 'her whole world fell apart.' She said her husband handled everything in their marriage such as the money, bills and auto maintenance. After he passed away she became overwhelmed with all the finances and other responsibilities she now had to deal with, not to mention the fact that she was still mourning the death of her husband.

This conversation got me to thinking of how many people deal with the painful loss of a loved one.

Many times when a loved one passes, those left behind might not immediately feel the effects of that loss. It has not 'hit them' or 'sunk in' yet. Sometimes it takes a while for a person to react to the loss. Some may try to stay strong or hide their feelings in front of others. But when the funeral is over and the family and friends have returned to their homes, the person may break down. It finally sinks in. Some sink into a depression so bad they close themselves off from the rest of the world. They take extra time off from work and even turn down invitations from family and friends.

Isolation and self-pity are never the answer. It's okay to mourn. Even people in Bible times mourned when they lost loved ones in death.

A few examples of this include:

* King David who was grief stricken when his son Absalon died (2Samuel 18:33)

* Abraham bewailed the loss of his dear wife, Sarah (Genesis 23:2)

* Even Jesus himself, who was a perfect man, 'gave way to tears' over the death of his friend Lazarus (John 11:35)

So this shows that there is a sadness when we lose a loved one to death.

Then thing is to not dwell on everything. Keep busy. Get involved in other things such as hobbies. Get you mind off the loss. The memories will always be there but they don't have to be painful.

Another thing that can help you deal with your sorrow is Bible reading. God, being the loving God that he is, helps his people to endure the extreme sadness and grief that comes with bereavement. God's spirit helps us to have peace and faith in the wonderful future promised in his Word the Bible.

The Scriptures refer to God as 'the God of all comfort,' so we can be sure that he will give us the strength we need and not let us be overwhelmed by sad thoughts about our dead loved one.

Knowing all this should help us realize that we are not alone in experiencing the pain of our loss. Others have been through the same thing. In time, the pain will subside. The world is not going to stop for our broken heart. Life will go on. Things WILL get better.

So knowing all of this and the fact that even the perfect man Jesus went through this as well, should help us to deal with the painful loss of a loved one.

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