Most often, the emotion of grief is associated with losing a loved one to death. I’ve learned in this life, that grief is associated with loss: loss of life, loss of a relationship, setbacks, etc. It’s a feeling that wears you down, or some days lift you up on Cloud 9.
I think we can all agree that grief is a part of the healing process, a process of grieving or mourning.
Take comfort that in time, God allows for all, yes even grief. In saying that it is a process, it’s not a place where we are to stay forever.
God limited the mourning time for the children of Israel when their leader Moses died. After 30 days, God told them to get up and move on.
There are many more examples where God allowed for periods of mourning, then told his people to get up and move on.
The process of grief happens in the following five stages…
1. Denial (Disbelief):
Here we refuse to accept what has happen. We block it out and escape from it, which can cause habit forming, addictive behaviors and drama in our lives to keep us away from reality.
What can I do? Talk to God, PRAY. Admit it to him or allow him to reveal your denial.
2. Anger (Turned Outward):
Here we are angry at what has happened to us. We feel that this thing that has happened has ruined use. You may feel out of control, and you may feel angry at a person or even God.
What can I do? First, pray about it. Admitting is the key; even if you are angry with God, tell him. If you are angry with a person, go to him/her in love; don’t let your emotions get the best of you. Find an activity that will help you through your anger: journal writing. Release that anger to prevent build up within you.
3. Guilt (Turned Inward):
Here, you are holding yourself responsible: it’s your entire fault! Guess what? It’s not!
What can I do? Confess it. It’s not you. Release and let it go.
Come to me, all you who are weary and burden, and I will give you rest.”
4. Genuine Grief (Weeping):
Here, we let it ALL OUT! Cry, Mourn. This is your physical relief.
What can I do? Remember, YOU ARE NOT ALONE! LET IT OUT!
5. Resolution (Acceptance):
Now, you move on. This stage only occurs when you’ve gone through the other stages. Acceptance is closure; you’ve made peace with it, move on.
What can I do? Forgive if needed, but put the past in the past and leave it there. Don’t think about it, don’t talk about it, let it heal.
What can I do? Tell others your testimony!
Let me warn you: Even though these stages are numerically ordered, they do no happen in that order (except number 5 when you have accepted). They can happen at any time: today you can be in denial, tomorrow you can have anger, but by next week you can be back to guilt.
So the grieving process is not a pretty process, but I will say, it’s a process which you need to partake in if you are grieving. Some people stay stuck in this process because they feel they have to be strong; just remember God calls all his weary for rest. Do Not Be Afraid!!
Take your first step towards healing today.