God Over All Grief
Despite the scathing effects of painful situations, the One who sticks closer than a brother is gentle, kind, and compassionate with His sheep in the midst of weakness.

God Over All Grief

by Fia Curley
8/29/17 Christian Living

There are some moments in life that are really hard. Then there are those moments in life that feel absolutely impossible.

And many times, these impossible moments aren’t relegated to only one season in life.

In the midst of the impossible, we can find ourselves emotionally devastated, gutted by circumstances and losses we face that we’re unable to control, manipulate, sidestep, alter, or reverse.

Accusation and questions bombard our minds as we wonder, “How did I get here?” and find ourselves asking, “What happened?”

We’re left with one single thought: This is not how it’s supposed to be.

The circumstances may vary, but in these times the effect is often the same—grief.

The death of a loved one, whether anticipated or completely unexpected, is one of the moments that can leave us sifting through past events looking for clues to what we can’t understand, hoping it will lead us out of chaos and confusion. Or the moment the pristine divorce papers sit before us, thick and heavy, awaiting our signature, quietly declaring, “It’s over.”

Or the discovery that someone we’ve trusted has lied or withheld information to benefit themselves. Then there are the times we reach out for help, only to find those we’ve supported aren’t willing to do the same in return.

Despite the scathing effects of painful situations, the One who sticks closer than a brother is gentle, kind, and compassionate with His sheep in the midst of weakness.

God does not despise us when we are in the midst of grief. He invites us to come to Him and rest as He leads us out of emotional turmoil into His place of provision. In this place we are free to feel and be cleansed and healed so we don’t mourn as those who have no hope.

In the Son of God we find One who is well acquainted with our weakness in all its forms, including the feelings that arise when loss or sadness leads to grief. Our sympathetic High Priest is familiar with moments of hardship and testing that weary the soul.

  • When friends have fled, abandoning Him in His moment of need.
  • When those He trusted betrayed Him for their own gain.
  • When the ones who promised to love Him leave, because they want something more, something different.
  • When the life of a loved one seems to end too early.
  • When people desire and value what He’s able to give them instead of who He is.

He has lived through it all. And as our Good Shepherd, He is well equipped to lead us to a place of peace and safety.

As our victorious King, He has triumphed over every situation.

In His hands, difficulty  is transformed into a refining tool, whittling away at all that hides the traces of the one question only He hears: Is God really good?

Of course we believe God is good. The Bible tells us so.

But in the face of rejection, abandonment, betrayal, death, and pain, it doesn’t always feel true.

We hurt in a way that makes bodily harm feel like a preferable option.

And yet, the One who is the Faithful Witness, gently draws us into the light of His love, saying “I know how you hurt and I’ve done what’s necessary so it won’t always be this way.”

For thus says the Lord: After seventy years are completed at Babylon, I will visit you and perform My good word toward you, and cause you to return to this place. For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, says the Lord, thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you a future and a hope. (Jeremiah 29:10–11)

The One who never dismisses us or our emotions deals tenderly with our hearts, putting truth before us again.

Then you will call upon Me and go and pray to Me, and I will listen to you. And you will seek Me and find Me, when you search for Me with all your heart. I will be found by you, says the Lord, and I will bring you back from your captivity. (Jeremiah 29:12–14)

The One who wept at the tomb of His friend stirs our faith to believe that even in the hardest of situations, God’s glory will be seen, not because we ignored the pain or hid the grief, but because He is good and we have willingly opened our hearts and lives to His hand.

And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose. (Romans 8:28)

Instead of telling us not to mourn or grieve, God provides what is needed in these situations—Himself. The God of all hope lifts our heads to look at Him, the One who calls Himself our Helper.

I will lift up my eyes to the hills— from whence comes my help?  My help comes from the Lord, Who made heaven and earth. (Psalm 121:1–2)

He does not despise the time it takes to bring us into wholeness.

Completely confident in His power and ability to heal, our Father draws us into the place of truth.

Despite the pain that feels overwhelming, the difficulty to accept our current circumstances, and the tears of anger and frustration, there is still hope for us. We still have a future, because God is still on His throne, ruling and reigning over all things. His plan for our lives has not suddenly dissipated due to our encounters with events that we deem unexpected or unfathomable.

In fact, our weaknesses, heartbreaks, flaws, upsets, and perceived and actual failures only really surprise us. As the ultimate strategist, our omniscient God, who has preexisted outside of time even before He created time, has crafted a plan for our good that takes into account all hardships, disturbances, and sufferings.

He is at peace not because He is uncaring, but because He has answers He’s prepared for us and healing He makes available to us. He is calm because He is still committed to His beautiful plan for our lives.

It’s in the place of remembering God’s sovereignty and allowing Him into the pain we feel that we are able to meet with the One who endured that pain first. He stabilizes us, calling us to forgiveness. We meet the One who is well acquainted with our weakness, because He has lived through it all and overcome. Regardless of the hardships we endure, Jesus makes Himself available as our great overcomer.

In every circumstance, He prevails.

With kindness, gentleness, and power He makes Himself available to cleanse, counsel, heal, and just listen. Then the One with all power and authority declares truth over our lives once again.

Death is under the feet of Jesus.  Rejection has been conquered by our King. And He has set us free to experience every single emotion, to be present in every situation, without turning away from it, knowing that He endured it too and will lead us through to health and wholeness.

“I will never forget this awful time, as I grieve over my loss. Yet I still dare to hope when I remember this: The faithful love of the Lord never ends! His mercies never cease. Great is his faithfulness; His mercies begin afresh each morning. I say to myself, “The Lord is my inheritance; therefore, I will hope in him!” (Lamentations 3:20–24 NLT)

Francis Chan will join us this year for Onething 2017. In this teaching from 2015, Francis shares the Biblical perspective for suffering and trusting the Lord in the midst of challenges.

Fia Curley


    Fia Curley served on the NightWatch at IHOPKC for many years, participating in prayer, worship, and intercession from midnight to 6am. Currently attending college in New York, she enjoys blending her passion for prayer, worship, and journalism as she labors with the Lord to see His goodness revealed to families, government leaders, and immigrants from non-Christian nations.

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