There is no lack of grief in the Scripture, and we should be ready and willing to put the words of God’s people to our own experience as a remembrance that, even in our loneliness, we do not walk an unknown path. Faithful people of God have long tread with sadness and despair, and God walked with them. Jesus himself, to capture the complete abandonment and isolation of the cross, quotes from the psalmist, “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?” (Psalm 22:1).
What can be said in the face of despair? What speaks the good news for those of us who feel unyielding grief or a strange numbness or an exhaustion we cannot explain? Those called to with walk with us can embody hope in a number of ways. Those invited to walk with us might practice questions like “What are you struggling to do, and can I help?” or “What helped the last time you felt like this?” and reach for them when the time is right.
This message is excerpted from “The truth about sadness” by Emmy Kegler in the July/August 2022 Gather magazine.
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