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In Sorrow's Hour

"Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves have received from God."1

A Daily Encounter reader writes: "We just found out that my mother has lung cancer that has spread to her liver. I know the Lord holds us in his arms, but how do we find the strength and courage to handle what we know is coming? I know Mom needs a rest from her pain, and that the chemo will make her sick, but I'm not ready to let her go. How do I stop being so selfish? It's very hard to 'Let go and let God.'"

I don't think it's selfish to feel the way you do. In fact, I'd say it's normal. It's always difficult when loved ones suffer and when there is a possibility of losing them, and even harder when we do lose them.

Unfortunately, loss is a part of life and all of us will experience it at some time, and it's never easy.

I don't think there are any easy answers except to daily commit and trust your life and that of your loved one to the Lord. Tell God exactly how you feel (He knows it anyhow), and tell Him you choose to trust Him even if you feel you can't. Do this every day or even more if necessary. In time your feelings will catch up with your choice to trust God. It is also very important not to bottle up your feelings of grief. Tears are a gift from God to help drain the pain of sorrow and loss. Pray that God will give you a friend with whom you can cry without being criticized or told you shouldn’t feel that way. Remember that when Jesus was sad, He wept! We need to do the same.

I'm reminded of a song that Danny Gaither sang so marvelously before he died of cancer. The words of the chorus went like this:

       Through it all,
       Through it all,
       I've learned to trust in Jesus,
       I've learned to trust in God.
       Through it all,
       Through it all,
       I've learned to depend upon His Word.

It's only through the rough times that we truly learn to trust God. And in the end for all who trust God and have committed their lives to Him, we will meet again where there will be no more sickness, sadness, sorrow or dying, and where God Himself will wipe away every tear. What a glorious day that will be. In the meantime we also need understanding and caring friends on whom we can lean—and also to be such a friend to others in need.

Suggested prayer: "Dear God, in all of life's circumstances I choose to trust in You no matter how I feel. Please help my feelings to catch up with my choice to trust You, and even if my feelings don't catch up quickly, I choose to trust You regardless. So help me God. Thank You for hearing and answering my prayer. Gratefully, in Jesus's name, amen."

1. 2 Corinthians 1:3-4 (NIV).


All articles on this website are written by
Richard (Dick) Innes unless otherwise stated.