Accepting grief and joy

I am heavy-hearted this weekend as I process the grief present in this community I consider family. Our sister in the earthly community of NWC and our sister in Christ has lost all sense of home this weekend, losing all of her immediate family. Everyone is affected differently, and all just want to be supportive, but we do so selfishly. Every class I had yesterday began with prayer for our sister, but in a week this won’t be the case. Why? Won’t she need prayers just as much next week? I am inclined to think it is because yesterday and today our hearts still hurt, and we pray to sooth that pain, but in a week, while her heart may still hurt, ours will heal, move on, find rest again. I refuse to let this be the case, whether this is possible or not I do not care. I choose to not let go of her pain. I choose to continue to pray for weeks, months….whether she knows that I’m praying or not does not matter. What matters is that the Lord hears. There is bitterness in this commitment, I know that, but I pray that my heart softens through the process of lifting her up daily to the Lord.

And I know that she is not the only one in great anguish over this loss. Many need our prayers at NWC, at Sioux Falls Christian, in the Vollmer’s church community, and in all those who are reminded of past grief through this news. All must be lifted up and entrusted to the Lord.

The pain is great, but I also know that God is using this for good. Not that he orchestrated this tragedy so that he could be glorified. Not at all. But he will take the pain that has occured and use it for good. I will choose to see beauty amidst this pain. I choose that joy, because it is the Lord’s will for each one of us. He does not want us to skip over the grieving process, my Lord knowing grief well in his own life, being overwhelmed with sorrow to the point of death prior to his crucifixtion, but he also does not want us to refuse joy, because both are part of life.

Encouragement over the last few days:
-conversations about the way God is working through this with many across campus
-the way the beauty of the frost on the pine trees protests the pain all around
-Psalm 46; Lamentations 3
-Song posted on fb Sunday by one connected to the Vollmer family, currently at 733 shares:

And when you cannot understand what he’s doing or what he’s got planned, the anguish bears down on you, feel like you’ll never make it through, take a moment to remember this one thing: Even when you can’t see him now, he’s got a plan to show you how to help you through the pain you’re in, help you come to realize He’s gonna do something great through it all.

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