Recently there has been a few deaths surrounding me. One of my dear friends lost his father, suddenly, to a disease. Another of my friends lost their unborn child, suddenly, to complications. My heart breaks for them over and over, but why?
Isn’t at the core of the Christian faith the sustained reality of “life after death”? Both of my friends whom I mentioned are strong believers, so why does the pain of death still hurt? Are we not blessed with the understanding that death isn’t the end?
I find it interesting that, at times, I push aside my emotions and focus on the promises of God. Then there are times that I melt into heartbreak and seek the assurance of the promises of God. There seems to always be a battle of the mind versus the heart when confronting grief. I’ve heard many people give their input as to why this happens. Some have said that it’s the battle of the heart; confliction against the flesh. Others have said that it’s the mind; focus and meditation are the issue. I find it to be much simpler than that. We hate death.
God the Father, God the Son, God the Holy Spirit and the believer – we hate death. The unifying and loving embodiment of the sanctified believer is persistently ushered into the reality that WE HATE DEATH – emotionally and logically hate death. Our mind and our heart counterpunch each wonderful stride against death because, praise be to our Savior, it is not meant for us.
For the secular world, however, hope is not a factor in the mourning process. Most times, it is difficult to face such tragedy and loss with positivity. Rather, it is just an aimless agony of desire. I think most often I find it difficult to empathize with someone mourning if the one who died was not a believer. I empathize with their loss, but hope is such a critical element of the Christian mourning process.
Good Friday is a perfect example of what Jesus thinks of death. He didn’t enjoy the journey to the cross. He even asked God if there was another way. Death is the separation from God, so naturally the remedy of such separation would be the contrast: embrace the Lord.
As Christians, how do we mourn well? We worship. A broken and grieving heart is an example of where God’s beautiful handiwork can be seen. My friend who lost a parent and the couple who lost their unborn child had every reason to be angry and hurt, but they sought the face of God.
My friend praised the faithfulness of God in loss of his father. My friends praised God that He prepared their hearts early on. Mourning well looks beautiful, when the body of Christ comes together, hates death and praises the Lord.