Grief tilts you.~Matt Haig (From How To Stop Time)
It doesn't feel like Valentine's Day. I'm sitting amidst unopened boxes at my new location. I am up high on the second floor of the room that will eventually be my place to write. Rain is streaming down the windows. The day is lit with gray glare. My desk is cluttered with papers and folders. Framed pictures not yet hung. I am tilted on this day of love, bent over with the chaos associated with moving, but also tilted with grief. One of my dear friends lost a family member to COVID-19. The man was only fifty. He left behind a wife, four children, his parents, my friend and countless extended family, friends and colleagues. The family invited me to watch the memorial service online. I could not stop my tears when this man's twenty-year-old son stood and spoke of his father's love and generosity. This beautiful man who looks so much like my friend, honored his father. His voice did not tremble. His eyes bright with courage.
This loss is incomprehensible to me.
The pastor conducting the service said he felt the same. Tilted. The pastor said he tossed and turned on his bed one night soon after the loss and vented to God, "Why? Why oh why did this good man in the prime of his life have to die?" He said he was led to the gospel of John:6: 66-69. And so from that time on many of the disciples turned their backs on Jesus and refused to be associated with him. So Jesus said to his twelve, "And you--do you also want to leave?" Peter spoke up and said, "But Lord, where would we go? No one but you gives us the revelation of eternal life. We're fully convinced that you are the Anointed One, the Son of the Living God, and we believe in you!
Even though I sit in my grief and lament on this Valentine's Day and mourn with this precious family, I agree with Peter, "Where else would I go?"
The Lord is close to all whose hearts are crushed by pain...even when bad things happen to the good and godly ones, the Lord will save them and not let them be defeated by what they face.~Psalm 34:18-19