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David Coy 

A journey

Alanis Morrisette is said to have written, “You live, you love, you cry, you lose, you bleed, you scream, you grieve, you choke, you laugh, you choose, you pray, you ask, you learn.” Grief is a very painful tutor in a person’s life. Some people believe that we go through stages or phases. People such as me believe it is a journey one travels. The fluid aspect is that we are all unique individuals with unique life experiences and unique grief experiences also. As such our experiences are changing with every passing day as change in our life is a constant therefore they cannot be fixed into a set of stages and phases as individuals are uniquely different from one to another. This I like to call the monogenes principle. (unique one of a kind).

As people we lose loved ones as we do friends, a real life case in point, is the man described in John 11 with the death of Lazarus, the sister of Mary and Martha. The text says, “he whom you cherish is ailing.” The word cherish is from the Greek phileo; to be a friend to, to show signs of love, to kiss” Also notice the reaction of Lazarus death to those who loved him. Martha was ‘weeping’ (mourn, weep, lament), and Jesus also wept, and shed tears. (vs. 33, 35) Clearly he was deeply moved within himself as he was troubled (agitated) by Lazarus death (vs. 33). Notice Jesus recognized the value and importance of allowing family and friends to ‘express their feelings’ about their loss. He (Jesus) as the master counselor (Isaiah 9:6) actively listened to them. Second, he (Jesus) showed empathy, placing himself in their shoes (so to speak) and understand from their perspective what they were experiencing. (As Wright says it, to see the loss through the person’s eye’s, vss. 21, 32, 35). Our journey with grief is eased when we have family, friends who are willing to walk with us in that journey. ~David

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