Tag Archives: grief

When the Wound Reopens

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Progressive.

That’s what healing is. It’s not always overnight or immediate, not always fixed with a Band-Aid or kiss from mom, not always quick and easy or even medically treatable. Sometimes it just takes time. And sometimes, even months or years later, something can happen that tears open an old wound. You thought scar tissue was protecting it, but then even that gets severed. The new rip in the old wound causes grief to pour out like a torrent while you desperately look around for a compress and wish you’d have been prepared with a tourniquet.

But that’s the thing. One is never prepared for the scab being torn off a wound. It’s like accidentally scraping a sunburn. If you knew it was coming, you would have stopped it. But it always catches you off guard.

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How to Suffer Missionally

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Broken relationships.
Cancer.
Sickness.
Death.
Loss.
Tragedy.
Grief.
Loneliness.

What if Scripture tells us God is a divine multitasker and that this hurt doesn’t only affect us? What if we aren’t suffering because God is cruel but because He’s equipping us to help others in ways we couldn’t without it?

We all suffer. What separates Christ-followers from the world is the way we respond. And with hearts and ears anchored in the Gospel, we can hear the sermon suffering preaches.

Suffering tells us we’re all groaning for full redemption and that we’re not alone because no life is untouched by difficulty. The poison of sin has slithered into the DNA of every human and with it comes suffering—the proof of our brokenness.

Perhaps God walks us down roads filled with potholes and trials and grief so we can learn the streets and one day drive others down them, helping them to navigate the curves to get to the finish line.

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Worship in the Dust

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O dear friend, when thy grief presses thee to the very dust, worship there!

If that spot has come to be thy Gethsemane, then present there thy ‘strong crying and tears’ unto thy God. Remember David’s words, ‘Ye people, pour out your hearts,’ — but do not stop there, finish the quotation, — ‘Ye people, pour out your hearts before Him.’ Turn the vessel upside down; it is a good thing to empty it, for this grief may ferment into something more sour. Turn the vessel upside down, and let every drop run out; but let it be before the Lord. ‘Ye people, pour out your hearts before Him: God is a refuge for us.’

When you are bowed down beneath a heavy burden of sorrow, then take to worshipping the Lord, and especially to that kind of worshipping which lies in adoring God, and in making a full surrender of yourself to the divine will.

-Charles Spurgeon

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When God Cleans You With Steel Wool

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Last week was rough. The following is a snapshot into my journal last Tuesday.


“Purge me with hyssop, and I shall be clean;
wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow.
Let me hear joy and gladness,
let the bones that You have broken rejoice.”
-Psalm 51:7-8

Sometimes it feels like God is cleaning me with steel wool instead of the cotton washcloths I prefer.

As I write this, my heart aches. I’m crying and hurting. I feel broken by longings and unsaid words and independent realities and the delay of good dreams. 

“I know, O Lord, that Your rules are righteous, and that in faithfulness You have afflicted me. Let Your steadfast love comfort me according to Your promise to Your servant. Let Your mercy come to me, that I may live; for Your law is my delight.” -Psalm 119:75-77

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Monday Morning Munch No. 155 -Don’t Suppress Your Pain

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What if Hannah had resigned herself to childlessness instead of pouring out her prayers to God with her tears?

What if the father of the Prodigal Son had dried his eyes and moved on, rather than watching and waiting for his wayward one to come home? What if Hosea, instead of grieving over his wife’s unfaithfulness, had proclaimed that this was God’s will and he was probably better off without her?

If these biblical characters had suppressed their pain and put on a happy face, we would be missing the deep bass notes that give the gospel such sweet resonance. If there are no tears, then the promise that God “will wipe away every tear from their eyes” (Rev. 21:4) would not be necessary.

-Betsy Childs Howard

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Monday Morning Munch No. 151 – Goodbyes

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I hate goodbyes. 

I hate when people say, “This isn’t ‘goodbye’ it’s ‘see you later,'” because it’s just putting some nice words on a parting of ways that feels more like a breakup than a hopeful parting, and I always hated euphemisms. Can’t we just say, “This is stupid and it hurts and we hate every millisecond of this torture”?

Tomorrow morning we’ll get on a plane and leave Iasi, making various stops along the way until we land in our hometown in Kentucky 24+ hours later. But, before that, hugs will be given, enough tears to fill at least 48 liters will be shed, and goodbyes will have to be said.

Or, if you’re like me, you don’t say anything except “I love you” over and over because you refuse to say the repulsive G-word (and you’re crying too much to get any proper words out).

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Monday Morning Munch No. 113 – Love & Grief 

Once again on point in all things wisdom and love, Elisabeth Elliot:

  From her book Lamp Unto My Feet.

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Jimbo and Jayna Burkey Video

Despite enduring the worst tragedy of their lives, Jimbo and Jayna Burkey continue to watch God redeem the circumstances of their 16-year-old daughter’s death, casting themselves on the Lord and finding rest in Him alone.

So many tears. Watch this short (4 minute) video about one of the most godly couples I know. Their lives radiate Christ and His grace despite much suffering. Be encouraged!

Read the Burkey’s complete story, their testimonies and how they give their lives away in order to disciple others, in the free March/April issue of Real Truth Magazine at realtruthmatters.com/magazine.

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