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Mourn Joyfully

There is a deep mourning in my soul at times.  It surprises me when it hits; sneaking up in the most untimely fashion.  It is a snatcher of happiness and of peace. It is a punch in the center of my skull and makes the empty spots inside my chest... well, emptier.

I remember the first time I felt loss and sorrow.  I mourned deeply and was only ten. Reading about tearing your clothes and sitting in sack cloth and ashes felt identifiable somehow. My loss at that time was watching my parent's marriage fall apart.  My sorrow was the fear of never being able to trust adult relationships again. (God has repaired and mended their marriage abundantly! It happened so long ago; I rarely remember it did. And my wounds are healed!) 

At different times throughout my life; sadness has overwhelmed me and I could agree with David in Psalms with his cries of desperation. Also, it is strangely comforting that God claimed David as a man after his own heart.  It means my sorrows aren't unusual and like David, I find God at the end of my ache. 

And always I am challenged to find out if my sorrow is about me not getting my own way or if I am spending too much time feeling bad about something that God is OK with or if it is a justifiable point of loss.  In my most challenging, soul searching musings, I often hear this: "Thou shalt have no other gods before me." - God.

That is also when peace and joy come back to me.  When I lay the hurt down before my God and ask Him if this hard thing is an idol. I ask a lot of questions while thinking through this checklist. Do I believe in a flesh and blood person more than God in this case?  Do I trust that God had gone before me clearing the path making ready for my loss? Do I believe God is in this circumstance?

You see, when I can let go of me and my plans, of  my dreams and ideals; there is surrender.  There is peace knowing my Great God has this situation covered from aching heart to throbbing brain. He holds the pain in His own powerful hands making it of some use somewhere, sometime, and somehow.

How can I not be joyful having so great a Caretaker? Everything I need to do life is provided for me. All of my needs are already met. There are no gaps or empty spaces.  The loss is still there, there is no denying it, but so is the comfort of Christ. This sustains me. I am never letting go. There is a whole cup of joy in this spot of sorrow.



  1. In Exodus 3 there is verse that says at the very end,"I know your sorrow.". That is beautiful to me. God knows.


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