I woke up this morning feeling a great sense of loss. This is something that happens at some point to everyone, I suppose. I tried to shake it off with prayer, activity, and even with strong wishing, but it’s still there.
So, I did some research on it.
Google describes loss as a noun and defines it as the fact or process of losing something or someone. That’s a pretty simple explanation. Unfortunately, dealing with loss is not quite so simple. It’s definition implies that loss ends once the object or person is gone. In my mind, that’s only the beginning of loss.
John Steinbeck, in The Winter of Our Discontent, wrote the following: It’s so much darker when a light goes out than it would have been if it had never shone.
I found that to be true after my wife and I lost our baby to miscarriage after ten years of marriage. A few people, while trying to comfort us, said, “This is a big blow. It must hurt so much to not have a child.”
I would often reply quietly, while screaming my lungs out inside my head, “We’re not sad because we don’t have a child. We’re sad because we once had a child and no longer do.”
So, what do I do this morning with my sense of loss? Do I squelch it? Do I try to think about something else? Or do I take the time to experience it?
C.S. Lewis, in A Grief Observed, shared the following words: Aren’t all these notes the senseless writings of a man who won’t accept the fact that there is nothing we can do with suffering except to suffer it?
Something within in me fights against that kind of logic though. Something says, “Suck it up and be happy. You shouldn’t feel this way if you’re have Jesus as your Savior and Lord.”
But there’s a flaw in that type of thinking as well. Jesus experienced terrible loss, much greater than I will ever know. Isaiah 53:3 says He was a man of sorrows, acquainted with deepest grief.
I think C.S. Lewis is right in what he is saying. There is nothing we can do with suffering except to suffer it. We can attempt to delay it or deny it, but we cannot destroy it. It’s going to find us in the end.
So, here’s my resolution for today. If I’m going to feel loss and grief today, I’m going to do it while holding the hand of the One who was acquainted with the deepest grief. He’s also the God who wants me to live life more abundantly and wants my joy to be full. He knows the way, not around, but through loss and I will follow Him.