Our daughter, Hannah was full of life, promise, and a love for her Lord. She was our youngest child, only 18 years old. A single vehicle accident on a stormy winter night, December 5, 2003 and she was gone. That was the beginning of a journey into grief that I can only describe as a black hole in which a person drowns. I wanted to curl up and die…
And now I tell you, I warn you through my experience what I pray you never go through, but I’m afraid some of you will and some of you have.
Within weeks of your loss your friends will stop calling, sending cards, dropping by, asking you, “ How are you doing?” Some people will actually avoid you not because they don’t care but because they don’t know what to say or do. People you thought would be there for you won’t and people you least expect will reach out to you but they will be few.
After about 6 weeks to two months from your loss, when you are no longer “distracted” by legal details, and funeral arrangements, no longer walking around like what I call a zombie; in a daze/numb, then the reality starts setting in… Your child will never come home again, never call again, and the many other things that made your child your joy will never be done again. You have begun the journey of the “Year of Firsts.” The first Mother’s day, Father’s day, birthdays, holidays without them. And with each “first” the pain sweeps over you like a flood as if it were just yesterday that they died.
As a silent enemy, Satan waits for his opportunity. He has been studying you, watching you, for that point of weakness, vulnerability that he can use to destroy you. He tailors his attack on each person to specifically fit them and his attack is subtle.
I warn you with sorrow for what lies ahead… In your grief, turn to the Lord and to your family. Be there for your spouse and other children if you have any. Don’t let the devil send into your life anyone or anything that would distract you from the Lord, your spouse, and your family. If you are a woman, then turn only to female friends for support outside of your personal family relationships and I say the same to men: turn only to other men for the devil walks about seeking whom he may devour. And he will use any means to secure your destruction; alcohol to “numb the pain”, drugs to “escape the pain”, people to distract you, whatever it is Satan will use it. So PRAY! PRAY without ceasing claiming God’s promises to be with you through this valley of death…
I now close with this thought: There is One who sees every tear and His heart grieves with yours. And someday, someday soon, He is coming back and will raise His children up who sleep in the grave and those who are alive at His coming will meet up with the resurrected saints in the air and then we will go HOME! This is Our Hope: Yours and Mine. John 14:1-4; 1 Thessalonians 4:13-18; Isaiah 57:1,2