When going through grief, suffering, and loss, it can feel like the absolute end of the world.
Throughout life, I’ve experienced over 40 major grief events…a mixture of death of loved ones, extreme loss, and serious tragedy. At the time, it did feel like the end of the world…because it was the absolute end of my world…especially since some of the loved ones I lost were my world.
It’s been through these incredibly hard, heartbreaking times I’ve learned the most though.
I didn’t initially learn much during my first few grief experiences…but the lessons came, and kept coming, and I did eventually choose to learn a lot.
After going through grief and loss while growing up (my dad, sister, grandparents, uncle, and boyfriend’s deaths, as well as my sister’s fiancé’s death; our home flooding and losing everything; an illness; a friend’s murder; two friend’s suicides; being in ICU twice; and other grief events), I remember naively thinking (when I was at the ripe, old age of 19), “I paid my dues…now I can live a grief-free life.” But that isn’t how “life” or “grief” works.
Grief is definitely not a “one and done” event; grief & suffering are a part of life…and will be intermittently woven throughout a lifetime.
I have found it comes in waves. Sometimes, the water is beautiful and calm…other times, it feels as though the the waves will engulf and drown you.
The better equipped and educated we are on the topic of grief/suffering, the better prepared we (and our loved ones) will be as we face any wave of grief. And there will be many waves of grief throughout the lives of most.
ALL grief events have value. Extraordinary value. God never wastes a hurt. We can waste our hurt; God never does. When we entrust our grief and heartache to God, He is faithful to bring something good out of it. It may not happen initially, but it will happen…even if we can’t see it at the time. (Psalm 56:8; Isaiah 66:9)
I’ve experienced multiple, worse grief events in my adult life…and I credit the the grief and loss I faced while growing up with helping prepare me for these future times of deep heartache and adversity.
Each grief event we go through is an opportunity to deeply mourn — as well as learn a new facet of God’s heart…to find out more about the condition of our hearts…to develop compassion, empathy, character and strength..and ultimately, to learn how to extravagantly love God and “suffer well”.
Learning how to “suffer well” isn’t fun. It’s my LEAST favorite part of any trial, grief experience, or loss. It takes God’s love and grace to do so.“Suffering well” means to run to God during times of grief, learning valuable lessons only God can teach us throughout our grief journey — ultimately, suffering well means to allow our grief to transform us into being more like Christ.
Grief (suffering) – although it is gut-wrenchingly terrible – is one of the best teachers on the planet…when you embrace it, God will show you things you can’t even fathom (1 Cor 2:9-10; Isaiah 45:3). God shows and teaches us things – treasures – when we walk through darkness that we can’t learn as effectively any other way.
Lessons bought with an incredibly high price…so high, you won’t want to waste it…are treasures. You can’t buy these lessons and treasures at Walmart; they’re purchased with each teardrop, sleepless night, and heartache. These lessons and treasures have great purpose throughout life – especially when we help our loved ones and others in times of suffering and grief. (2 Cor 1:4)
As Christians, Jesus shares we will experience hardships, trials, grief, and suffering – the Bible is FILLED with scripture on these topics – so it makes sense to study God’s Word and find out how to best navigate these super tough times.
Let’s purpose today to love God and draw as close as we can to His incredible heart…to study God’s Word on grief, loss, and suffering…to find out as much as we can in the Bible…and to seek God’s heart throughout each grief event we experience throughout life. He is the key to getting through grief.💗
Want to know how Grief Bites began? Read all about it here.
🥰Bible verses to encourage your heart🥰
“The Lord is near to the brokenhearted and saves the crushed in spirit.”
~ Psalm 34:18
“I remain confident of this: I will see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living. Wait for the Lord; be strong and take heart and wait for the Lord.”
~ Psalm 27:13-14
“In the same way I will not cause pain without allowing something new to be born,” says the Lord..”
~ Isaiah 66:9
“I will give you the treasures of darkness and the riches hidden in secret places, so that you may know that I am the LORD, the God of Israel, who calls you by name.”
~ Isaiah 45:3
“You’ve kept track of my every toss and turn through the sleepless nights, Each tear entered in your ledger, each ache written in your book. God, you did everything you promised, and I’m thanking you with all my heart. You pulled me from the brink of death, my feet from the cliff-edge of doom. Now I stroll at leisure with God in the sunlit fields of life.”
~ Psalm 56:8, 12-13
“Be strong and courageous…The LORD himself goes before you and will be with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged.”
~ Deuteronomy 31:7-8
“For the LORD comforts his people and will have compassion on his afflicted ones.”
~ Isaiah 49:13
“Fear not, for I am with you; be not dismayed, for I am your God; I will strengthen you, I will help you, I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.”
~ Isaiah 41:10
“Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. Not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your hearts be troubled, neither let them be afraid.”
~ John 14:27
“But he knows the way that I take; when he has tried me, I shall come out as gold.”
~ Job 23:10
“The Lord is good, a stronghold in the day of trouble; he knows those who take refuge in him.”
~ Nahum 1:7
“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.”
~ Matthew 11:28-29
“I have said these things to you, that in me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation. But take heart; I have overcome the world.”
~ John 16:33
“For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.”
~ Jeremiah 29:11
“For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but in order that the world might be saved through him.”
~ John 3:16-17
“Trouble and anguish have found me out, but your commandments are my delight.”
~ Psalm 119:143
“If my people who are called by my name humble themselves, and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and heal their land.”
~ 2 Chronicles 7:14
Praying everyone who is walking through grief will find encouragement, comfort, love, hope, and healing for their hurting heart!
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❤️Making peace with God: http://www.peacewithgod.net
❤️Getting Your Breath Back After Life Knocks It Out of You (Kim’s book):
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❤️FREE YouVersion reading plans:
- Grief Bites: Finding Treasure In Hardships: https://www.bible.com/reading-plans/912-grief-bites-finding-treasure-in-hardships
- Grief Bites: Doubt Revealed: https://www.bible.com/reading-plans/954-grief-bites-doubt-revealed
- Grief Bites: A New Approach To Growing Through Grief https://www.bible.com/reading-plans/862-grief-bites
- Grief Bites: Hope For The Holidays: https://www.bible.com/reading-plans/1964-grief-bites-hope-for-the-holidays
- Experiencing Holidays With Jesus: Christmas: http://bible.com/r/3V5
- Happy New Year!: Experiencing Holidays With Jesus: http://bible.com/r/3Zv
- Valentine’s Day: Experiencing Holidays With Jesus: https://www.bible.com/reading-plans/14059-valentines-day-experiencing-holidays-with-jesus
- The True Treasure of Christmas: https://www.bible.com/en/reading-plans/28852
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⭐️⭐️All content on the Grief Bites blog and website is for encouragement purposes only and is not in any way to be construed as medical, emotional, mental, relational, or psychological advice. We hope to serve as a bridge to encourage others by sharing our personal grief and life experiences. Please contact a qualified healthcare professional, mental health professional, or qualified pastor for guidance and advice.