Sitting in Expectation

Grief. 

It is an intangible, invisible feeling, one that can't be described. It sits there. In the pit of your stomach, churning. 

I've become well acquainted with grief. Much more than I ever thought I would. But until recently, I was never able to identify it as grief. 

I would have identified it as something else because grief didn't seem right. It seemed selfish. So many people are grieving the loss of family members and facing a scary diagnosis, how could I call what I was feeling grief?  

Yes, I've experienced the death of a loved one, but recently? I was blessed. The Lord opened the door for me to venture out on my own to the opposite side of the country to serve in ministry. He has always provided for my needs. He's brought friends that became family. What did I have to grieve? 

I've recently begun to see grief as something more than just facing the loss of a family member. Grief emerges at the loss of something valuable, the loss of something important, something you cherish. 

You can grieve over the loss of a friendship, the loss of a job, the loss of a dream, the loss of the life you had planned and hoped for. 

I am a fixer. 

Once I realized I was grieving specific circumstances in my life as well as the loss of what I had hoped and planned for in my life, I immediately wanted to fix it. 

How can I get through this quickly? 
How do I get rid of that churning in the pit of my stomach? 

But you know what the Lord so quietly whispered: Be still. 

I imagine how I must have looked when the Lord spoke this to me. 

"Really, Lord? That doesn't make it go away!" 

Be still.

It was (and still is) one of those moments that I had to convince myself that the Lord knows better. 

If the Lord is telling me to be still and not to run hard after what I think is the best solution to this problem, He must know what He best. 

I think of Jesus overlooking Israel and weeping over the state of the nation He loved. 
I think of Jesus weeping at the news that Lazarus had died. 
I think of Jesus crying out to the Father, "If there is any other way..."
I think of Jesus crying out on the cross, "My God, why have you forsaken me."

Separated from His father, rejected by the people He loved, mocked and beaten. Jesus understood grief. 

But the end of grief is joy. 

God has promised:

To console those who mourn in Zion,To give them beauty for ashes,The oil of joy for mourning,The garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness;That they may be called trees of righteousness,The planting of the Lord, that He may be glorified.

As I sit in my grief, I also sit in hope. I sit in expectation, looking unto the Author and the Finisher of my faith who for the joy set before Him endured this grief, waiting for the day where he turns my mourning into joy. 




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