Earlier today, I received a comment on another article by a grieving Mom who spoke of the ‘wrong’ kind of support vs. the ‘right’ kind of support which we who grieve may experience. She described the wrong type as: “It’s like being thrown to the dogs over and over.” In response, I commented: “The ‘wrong’ support reminds me of the old cliche: ‘Kick them when they’re down’. Such tragedies have a way of bringing to light who our ‘real’ friends are. I like to think that most that add to our grief, do so unknowingly. Losing a child is simply impossible for those who have not, to understand. The depth…the magnitude…of the excruciating pain is unimaginable. What can be even worse is when the additional hurt comes from other grieving moms. I have been bewildered by such things. I was naive enough to think that others who have walked this journey would naturally be kinder. But, I found that to not always be the case. Another grieving Momma recently shared with me that if a person was a mean person before they lost a child, they can still be a mean person afterward. Such a thing boggles my mind and brings me great sadness.”
This reminded me of one of the first articles I had written last Summer. Because of this interaction, I will post that article which has become an excerpt from my Book: ‘Gifts from the Ashes’.
King David vs. Pharaoh….TOPIC
I had posted a few days ago about something I went thru personally, and recently, that caused me great heartache. It’s one thing to be attacked by some who do not ‘get it’ when it comes to the loss of a child and the deep, beyond measure, excruciating pain a parent experiences…and quite another to feel ‘attacked’ by other bereaved parents. (Psalm 55:12-14)
The expectation is that they ‘should’ ‘get it’, and usually they do. However, some react in very unhealthy ways to their pain rather than trying to work thru it and find Hope. My heart breaks for those individuals because I know that eventually it will catch up with them. They may delay/deny/run from their grief and pain for a time, and succeed in doing so. However, in the big picture of things, they are only adding to their own grief. I find that to be very very sad.
The Lord is always Faithful to use everything in our lives that happens, somehow for our good (Roms. 8:28)… or at least brings forth some good things out of even the worst tragedies such as losing a child. It may take some time, even many years, before we can see any good things come forth. But they will, eventually, when we are open to receiving them.
That’s what drew me to the contrast between King David and Pharaoh. Both men lost a child. In fact, David lost 2 and for each his grief response was different. But the difference is that neither time that David lost a child (both sons) did he harden his heart. When his 1st son died, David turned to the Lord and stood on his Faith knowing he would one day see his child again declaring in 2 Sam. 12:23 ” I shall go to him, but he shall not return to me.” In 2 Sam. 18:33 when he lost his 2nd son, this occurred: And the king was deeply moved and went up to the chamber over the gate and wept. And as he went, he said, “O my son Absalom, my son, my son Absalom! would God I had died for thee, O Absalom, my son, my son!
But Pharaoh did harden his heart. 10 plagues were sent upon Egypt yet Pharaoh repeatedly hardened his heart. Even after his son died in the 10th plague (Exodus 11-12), there still was no change brought about in the heart of Pharaoh. Though, momentarily, he allowed the slaves to be freed…he quickly hardened his heart again to set out and destroy them (Exodus 14).
The conclusion I drew from this contrast is that we who have lost a child(ren) always have a choice. God gave us all a freewill. We can either react to the grief that has come upon us, or we can turn to God for His comfort & Hope, and respond. We, as Christians, do grieve differently than those who are not. We feel the same in many ways….the pain is excruciating, we struggle with horrible days of depression, we get angry, we beat ourselves up with the ‘what if’s’ & ‘if only’s’, etc.. But herein lies the difference, and it makes all the difference in the world: we grieve with Hope. We know we will see our child(ren) again (1 Thes. 4:13). We know that one day all our tears and sorrow will vanish (Rev. 21:4). We know that these days of torment will not only cease, but will also be forgotten and never come to mind (Is. 65:17).
That is why I encourage all to choose the way of King David over the way of Pharaoh in your grief. It is your/my choice. I pray we choose wisely.
(((HUGS))) Jude Gibbs, Author of ‘Gifts from the Ashes’ available at: Xulon Press, Amazon, Barnes & Noble and DeeperShopping. Additional international retailers: http://www.foyles.co.uk/witem/biography/gifts-from-the-ashes,jude-gibbs-9781498496728
Also, a Contributor on ‘The Mighty’: https://themighty.com/author/jude-gibbs/
Please help spread the Word. TY! (((HUGS)))