... for Amos
'The Lord is near to those who have a broken heart, And saves such as have a contrite spirit. Many are the afflictions of the righteous, But the Lord delivers him out of them all.'
- Psalms 34:18-19
Probably one of the hardest things we have to face in life is loss or grief.
Grief: intense sorrow, especially caused by loss or by someone’s death; deep anguish caused by loss.It’s a deep and powerful emotion caused by the loss of someone or something we held dear. The meaning of grief says it all.
Because we live in a fallen world, we will all face it at some point in our lives. Grieving is the price we pay for loving and engaging with life. Part of the reason that grieving is so tough and feels so terrible, is simply that it’s not how it’s supposed to be.
Abba Father does not like pain or loss. Both were absent from His original design for creation, but sin crept in and brought tragedy and destruction (Genesis 3:1-6)
The thief does not come except to steal, and to kill, and to destroy.
– John 10:10
Grief, loss, pain, and brokenness, etc. are all unavoidable aspects of life, but there is always hope, healing, and restoration in Christ Jesus.
Beloved, think it not strange concerning the fiery trial which is to try you, as though some strange thing happened unto you:But rejoice, inasmuch as ye are partakers of Christ's sufferings; that, when his glory shall be revealed, ye may be glad also with exceeding joy.
- 1 Peter 4: 12 and 13
In the Word of God, we read about many biblical characters who experienced a great deal of loss.
David, the great Psalmist, giant slayer and King of Israel, often calls out to God as he goes through a great amount of loss and face a multitude of emotions. (Psalms, 1 & 2 Samuel)
In the Psalms, we see that David always finds his hope and strength in the midst of his grieving. Abba Father always meets him right where he’s at.
'O Lord my God, I cried out to You, And You healed me.' - Psalms 30:2
'My soul dissolves because of grief; Renew and strengthen me according to Your word. ' - Psalms 119:28
'He heals the brokenhearted And binds up their wounds.' - Psalms 147:3
Naomi lost her husband and two sons. She felt the hopelessness and bitterness as it accompanies grief. She even tells the people of her hometown:
But she said to them, “Do not call me Naomi (pleasant); call me Mara (bitter), for the Almighty has dealt very bitterly with me. – Ruth 1:20.
Naomi was hurt, but also very angry and it’s quite clear who Naomi blamed for her loss. But God never abandoned Naomi and Ruth, but patiently dealt with her and in His time he provided a redeemer for Naomi and Ruth in Boaz. In the end Naomi’s bitterness turned into joy and she praised God.
I have come to see, that some things only come by suffering. Suffering does something that nothing else will do; it prepares the soil. - Dereck Prince
Job lost everything. Literally. No Biblical character experienced loss like Job.
After Job repented not just for what he said, but also for what he was and also after Job prayed for his friends God restored Job’s losses. Indeed the Lord gave Job twice as much as he had before. Now the Lord blessed the latter days of Job more than his beginning; - Job 42:12
God reminds Job and us, that He is crafting something far more beautiful than we could ever imagine while He also works things out for His glory and our good.
And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.
- Romans 8:28
We clearly see that restoration is who Abba Father is and how He operates. He is restoring all things. All pain and grief will end. No more brokenness and tears. We will simply live a perfect life in truth, peace, and love with Him.
'And God will wipe away every tear from their eyes; there shall be no more death, nor sorrow, nor crying. There shall be no more pain, for the former things have passed away.”'
- Revelation 21:4
Although the world is still full of suffering, we know this is not from God. Sin brought in all evil things, and because of sin, the world became fractured and broken. But our Almighty God will restore you, not just individuals, but all of creation. Even today, God is restoring the world to it’s original design, He sent His son, Jesus Christ, as the ultimate sacrifice. Voluntarily experiencing intimate loss for the sake of us, His people. He too knows what loss feels like. He bore that pain so that we could overcome ours. Even the Word of God tells us:
To everything there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven:A time to be born, and a time to die; A time to weep, and a time to laugh; A time to mourn, and a time to dance;
Jesus, I need you!
You are my Lord, my God, my King. You are worthy of all of my worship. Help me, by Your grace, to know you and love you so deeply and dearly that the things of this world fade away and grow strangely dim. I want to worship You and You alone. I don’t want to be forged by the culture. I am in You; I want to be one with You. Bind my heart to Yours, and place your truth deep within me. I not only want to know You and Your Word, I want to have the desire to forsake sin and follow You and Your Word.
Enable me to worship You in spirit and in truth. I need Your power, Your grace, and Your love so that no matter what life brings my way, I can respond to each situation, each person, and each trial the way You would respond—all for Your glory. I don’t want to respond merely outwardly, but rather from within, from the river of living water. I want to be so close to you, Jesus, that your Spirit flows forth from me in all I do and say. May I find all of my joy in You.
May I glorify You in all I say and do. (Psalm 42:1-2; Galatians 2:20)
No matter where I am, what I am doing, what Scripture I am reading, or what song I am singing, I want my mind and my heart focused on You and not on me and my circumstances. I want You and You alone.
No matter if I succeed or fail, win or lose, am rich or poor, am included or excluded, am known or forgotten, may I be content knowing that You are mine and I am Yours. May my chief aim be to love You and be loved by You, to please You and serve You. Help me to see my sin, mourn it, and forsake it, by your grace. Help me hunger and thirst after righteousness.
Lord Jesus, grant me your grace, your mercy, and your loving kindness to enable me to see You, know You, love You, and be one with You. Thank you that your Word tells me if we ask anything in your name and according to your will that you will do it.
Amen. (John 14:13-14)
(I take no credit for this prayer. This prayer belongs to Thistlebend Ministries: Jesus, I need you)
For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us.- Romans 8:18
Blessed are they that mourn: for they shall be comforted,