When Grief Grips

by | Nov 11, 2016 | Musings | 0 comments

How quickly things can change in our lives. We can go along, as we have every other day, and suddenly something unplanned happens. That which we may have taken for granted is suddenly snatched away from us. Tragedy and near tragic events remind us of how fragile our lives really can be.

Within a short span this past month we experienced a number of significant events that rocked our world. None were planned; none were expected; none were really desired. But come they did.

The experiences of grief cut through my emotional defenses, leaving me somewhat numbed by the pain.

I know people who will piously say to me, “God is in control, It’ll be okay. You”ll see.” How carelessly the words flow from the lips of Job’s friends, trying to offer simplistic answers, as if somehow these will assuage the impact or lessen the effects of grief.

This is not about faith issues. It is never about faith issues. It is seeking to live in the certainties of unanswered questions, in the silence of unanswered prayers, in those deep longings to know “why”, when there seems to be no “why”.

So often the answers offered seem shallow, almost intrusive. I know because I have given them to others. Yet like a clanging cymbal or a noisy gong they offer no substance, merely clutter to an already questioning mind. The ministry of silence often speaks louder than ill-spoken words.

“It’s okay. Time will heal.” Does it, really? Grief often sneaks up behind us and with a slap, reminds us that it is still there. The fragrance, the laughter, the seasons. the empty places all speak to our grief, sometimes with whispers and other times with shouts.

Time does not heal. We learn to live in the uncertainties of life. Many questions still remain. Many prayers still seem unanswered.

There are very few things that I pontificate with certainty anymore. Youthful arrogance has given way, not to cynicism or even agnosticism, but more focused, more centered. There are some things that are still central to my life; the rest is merely chaff that the winds of time have blown away.

The prophet Micah clears away for me some of the rubble of confusion, of questionings in his simple statement. “God has shown you what is good. And what does the LORD require of you? To act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God.” (Micah 6:8)

That I can do.







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Please know that I love to speak with my Father and to bring others before Him in prayer. I have this unfailing belief that He both hears and answers the prayers of His children.
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Dave Griggs, MDiv

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