How Does A Christian Grieve?

Rachael Butler

He will swallow up death for all time, And the Lord GOD will wipe tears away from all faces, And He will remove the reproach of His people from all the earth. —Isaiah 25:8


There's something unnatural about death— it strikes against the trusting, attachment forming parts of our souls. The loss of a loved one can impact our well-being, our understanding of who God is and our ability to engage fearlessly in relationships. In the story of Scripture, death did not exist in the Creator's original, good plan for us. Death was a result of sin. A part of the curse. The fall of creation. Mysteriously, we are also told that "Death has been swallowed up in victory." (I Cor. 15:54)

Victory? How strange. Even laughable. What does victory look like to a young widow, an orphan or a newly childless father? The normal platitudes offered to those who are grieving seem to diminish the glory of what we were meant for. "She's in heaven now." "It will get better with time." "It's all in God's plan." All contain some amount of truth, yet miss out on the bigger reality that, according to Scripture, death was something that needed to be conquered.


God invites us to mourn. He instructs it. In the Beatitudes, he promises "Happy are those who mourn, for they will be comforted." Grieving can be an act of passionate worship. Our intense pain confirms that the world is not right and that we long for God's redemption. We long for the fullness of the promised victory in our relationships and in our loss.

If you have experienced a loss, I invite you to enter into this form of grieving. A grieving that reflects the glory of who God is and who we were meant to be.


We're starting a therapeutic group for those struggling with a recent or past loss of a family member or significant other. The group will meet weekly over the course of two consecutive months, starting this fall.


9/10/12 UPDATE:
We've launched a few grief groups over the past year. Go HERE to learn more.

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