Peace for the grieving Soul
Have you ever tried to put yourself in the disciples’ shoes? Have you ever wondered what it felt like when Jesus told them He would be going away? They left all they had to follow Him. Hopefully, He would be king and restore their kingdom to them. He healed Peter’s mother-in-law, He fed five thousand men, He changed their lives and gave them relevance. It was nice to be hanging around the one who had the answer to all of life’s problems. He made them famous. He extended His power and authority to them; sending them out in twos to do the same things He did. They found purpose. Then he begins to speak of going away. I would be sad. Why would He raise their hopes only to dash them. Why would He leave them now without help? They were distressed and agitated at the thought of losing the one who loved them and cared so much for them.
It’s that kind of feeling you have when you are about to lose a loved one. Seven years ago my father went to be with the Lord. I knew these scriptures but they were not yet a revelation to me. I was distraught, I was sad and disappointed. Grief is a toxic emotion, it almost destroyed me and my relationships. I knew my only way out was God’s Word so I kept listening to the Word. It took a very long time for my heart to heal.
Then I came across these scriptures; John 14:1, 18-19, 26-27 AMPC Jesus told His disciples He was going away and sorrow filled their hearts. These words in John 14 were His words to them: DO NOT let your hearts be troubled (distressed, agitated). You believe in and adhere to and trust in and rely on God; believe in and adhere to and trust in and rely also on Me. I will not leave you as orphans [comfortless, desolate, bereaved, forlorn, helpless]; I will come [back] to you. Just a little while now, and the world will not see Me any more, but you will see Me; because I live, you will live also. But the Comforter (Counselor, Helper, Intercessor, Advocate, Strengthener, Standby), the Holy Spirit, Whom the Father will send in My name [in My place, to represent Me and act on My behalf], He will teach you all things. And He will cause you to recall (will remind you of, bring to your remembrance) everything I have told you. Peace I leave with you; My [own] peace I now give and bequeath to you. Not as the world gives do I give to you. Do not let your hearts be troubled, neither let them be afraid. [Stop allowing yourselves to be agitated and disturbed; and do not permit yourselves to be fearful and intimidated and cowardly and unsettled.]
Wow! I realised that no matter the situation I was going through, I had a choice to make. I could choose to wallow in self pity and mourn and grieve like those who have no hope or I could reach out in faith and receive the comfort of the Holy Ghost. I had the power to choose between a troubled heart and a peaceful mind.
The scripture says, do not let your heart be troubled, distressed or agitated; meaning if at anytime I am troubled, distressed or agitated then I allowed it. It sounds like an unfair thing to say right? especially if you just lost a loved one but the truth is that you have peace and joy in your heart. They are part of the fruits of the recreated human spirit and you can choose to give them expression or surpress their effect in your life. You have a choice to make.
You have a choice to believe God’s Word. He says He will not leave you as orphans [comfortless, desolate, bereaved, forlorn or helpless] He meant that. He sent us the Holy Ghost to be our Comforter (Counselor, Helper, Intercessor, Advocate, Strengthener, Standby). Truly we are not left helpless. We may miss our loved ones but we have the comfort of the Holy Ghost.
Many times the reason we grieve so much is out of selfishness. My mum was all a woman ever needed in her life, or so I thought. She was the best grandma ever. she was everything I needed her to be. she was my go to person. I could leave the kids with her and travel. She was just a call away and did everything with such a sweet spirit.
Last year, the unthinkable happened. I had finally gotten over dad and here she was slipping away right before my eyes. I prayed, confessed, worshipped, praised… but she slept and didnt wake up; at least not on this side of eternity. She was gone! Right there in the hospital I began to make calls and arrange for her internment. I could not understand the peace. I began to sing Hillsong’s ‘My hope is built on nothing less…’ It was not what we believed for. We were sad by the events that led to her death but there was peace.
This time I was willing to receive the peace that Christ promised. I refused to mourn like the unsaved. I cried because it hurt to see her go in that manner but what peace I felt in my heart. Truly He keepeth him in perfect peace whose mind is stayed on Him (Isaiah 26:3). There was peace beyond understanding. I noticed some brethren monitoring me, afraid that I was in shock and would soon recover and hurt myself; but no! It was peace that surpasses understanding.
The scriptures had changed my perspective seven years ago. I knew she had gone to be with Jesus! oh what a joy. She would not give that up for anything. When I am old and grey headed, and have run my race and finished my course, we will be united again.
Now don’t get me wrong. I am a woman of faith and my faith works. I don’t know why she didnt come out of the illness but all I know is that death has lost it’s sting and whether we live in this life or we sleep; we win! For the one who knows Jesus, it is a win-win situation. There are no losses with us. We always win.
Friend, do not let your heart be troubled. Trust in God. Receive God's peace, not the kind the world gives. I am not asking you to simply have a drink or smoke and temporarily forget your sorrows. I am asking you to receive the life of God and the peace He freely gives. God in Christ has bequeathed His peace to you, He has given us peace as our inheritance. Peace is from the word shalom which means nothing missing and nothing broken. Nothing is missing, nothing is broken. My heart is whole. By the way heaven is real or don’t you believe it? If you believe heaven is real, you will receive this peace which Christ has so freely given. You have to receive it for it to benefit you. Stop allowing yourself to be agitated and disturbed; and don't allow yourself to be intimidated and cowardly and unsettled.
How do we receive the things of the Spirit? By believing and speaking the word in the area we want to receive. Find the scriptures that speak concerning your situation and begin to meditate and speak till they become part of you. Stay with those words till you believe beyond a shadow of doubt that God’s Word is truth. One of the first messages I received from a friend when mum passed on was this scripture;
1 Thessalonians 4:13-18 (KJV)
But I would not have you to be ignorant, brethren, concerning them which are asleep, that ye sorrow not, even as others which have no hope. For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so them also which sleep in Jesus will God bring with him. For this we say unto you by the word of the Lord, that we which are alive [and] remain unto the coming of the Lord shall not prevent them which are asleep. For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first: Then we which are alive [and] remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord. Wherefore comfort one another with these words.
The message translation of the last verse says: "there will be one huge family reunion with the Master. So reassure one another with these words".
Be comforted my friend. Don’t allow the toxic emotion eat you up and steal your life away. Live long and finish strong! Move on! Your loved ones would want you to move on; so MOVE ON! These were some of the scriptures I meditated upon when satan tried to put grief on me. They will bring you out of that state of depression as you meditate upon them, in Jesus name.
Surely He hath borne your grief and carried your sorrows...the chastisement of your peace was upon him and by His stripes you were healed (Isaiah 53:4-5) He will keep him in perfect peace whose mind is stayed on Him because he trusts in Him. (Isaiah 26:3) Be careful for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God. And the peace of God, which passes all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus. (Phil. 4:6-7)
Cast your cares upon the Lord for He cares for you 1 Peter 5:7 Put your trust in Him and embrace the peace He so freely gives.