Sunday, December 20, 2015

What do you do with grief during the holiday season?

When you're a believer and someone you love dies who isn't a believer, what do you do? The platitudes of comfort that one believer offers to another are almost meaningless because there is no hope of eternal life for the person you've lost. True, I don't know what miracles the Lord Jesus works at the very end of someone's life. Maybe there is an Andrew like in Touched by an Angel who spends 5 minutes with everyone on earth right before they die, sharing the good news. It's possible.

My father's oldest living sister, Janet, died a few months ago. A more generous, accomplished and compassionate woman you couldn't hope to meet, but she never claimed an interest in faith or God. My aunt is gone. And I have no hope of ever seeing her again. This is literally the first loss I've ever experienced where the other person wasn't a Christian. What do you do? How do you handle the shock? Or how about the guilt that you should have done more? Should have said more. Should have shared more without fear bogging you down. It's crazy, I know. People make their own choices in this life and it's not like she never heard the good news, because I know she did, many times throughout her life, from my father, from their mother, and from who knows how many other friends and acquaintances.

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