I’ve been listening to you.
The answers have poured in when I asked you to name the one thing you can’t move beyond, not without help. You said:
A broken relationship.
A hurting past.
A loved one’s loss or lack of faith.
Former addiction or mistakes that cost you and those you love.
That ministry or business decision you made, believing it would work, but it didn’t.
Those are a few of your stories and they matter, but yesterday I asked you to share the emotion behind that — for that’s where God wants to do His work. That’s where we are able to move forward. As I read each response, the one word that kept whispering in my soul is this: loss.
You’ve lost something, and you feel you’ll never get it back. You are strong and love Jesus like crazy, but you have experienced a loss that resulted from your story.
If we leave this conversation at loss, it would be hopeless indeed. Instead, I wonder what might happen if we gave ourselves permission to mourn that loss.
Verbalizing our loss is powerful.
It’s the first step to moving forward.
Maybe someone has told you that it’s stronger to push it down. It isn’t.If someone tells you that it's strong to push down those feelings of loss, invite Jesus to weep with you. http://wp.me/p4jbdw-44H Click To Tweet
Maybe your story was written a long time ago, and it feels a little awkward to still have those feelings. You are not alone in that.
You are brave. You are strong. You are courageous as you speak your loss into the Light. I’ve moved past many significant losses, but life sometimes presents new ones:
Maybe it’s the words said in a moment of anger.
Maybe it’s mistakes (large or small) made as a mom or in a close relationship.
Maybe it’s that insecure moment you experienced just yesterday, and you can’t take it back.
Once we verbalize our loss, we grant ourselves permission to grieve.
Jesus wept. John 11:35 (NIV)
I love this picture of our Savior. He wept for Lazarus, perhaps — but more for the grief of Lazarus’ sisters. These were his friends. He clearly saw their broken heart, and wept with them.When we verbalize our loss, we give ourselves permission to grieve. #livingfreetogether http://wp.me/p4jbdw-44H Click To Tweet
Maybe you relate to the Psalmist in Psalm 69:20, who said, “I looked for sympathy, but there was none.”
What we can’t find in people, we find in our faith.
People were never intended to be our need-meeters. They aren’t big enough. They might not have the tools. The beautiful news is that we do have a Counselor.
And I will ask the Father, and He will give you another Helper (Comforter, Advocate, Intercessor—Counselor, Strengthener, Standby), to be with you forever— John 14:16 (AMP)
You have a Helper who will grieve with you in that loss of a relationship with your mom, who just never had it in her to be a mother.
You have a Counselor who understands the loss of your security when a scary diagnosis hits.
You have an Advocate due to the loss as a result of past mistakes or choices you wish you hadn’t made.
You have an Intercessor who stands by you as you grieve the loss of safety you so needed, but didn’t have.
When we give ourselves permission to grieve loss, we give ourselves permission to heal — no matter how long it takes.
And the Holy Spirit helps us in our weakness. For example, we don’t know what God wants us to pray for. But the Holy Spirit prays for us with groanings that cannot be expressed in words. Romans 8:26 (NIV)
What is your loss? Will you bring it to the Light? Write it in your journal. Spill that loss in ink and tears, and hold it up to the Lord. He’s seen it all along, but now you’ve placed it where it can be mourned and grieved.
Lord, thank you for her bravery in holding this up to you.
Day #2 of Moving Past What We Cannot Change
1. We often think of our story in terms of what happened, or who was involved, instead of the loss we experienced. Write what you lost in your journal. Give it room to breathe. Don’t try to put a shiny spin on it.
2. Write John 14:16 (the Amplified version) next to that entry in your journal. Ask the Helper to be with you as you begin to mourn this loss.
3. Name one reason it is important to mourn a loss.
In The Unburdened Heart, I wrote:
“Maybe we don’t want to be that person who wraps her identity around the past or tells the same stories one after the other. David wrote, speaking of God, in Psalm 51:6, “Behold, You desire truth in the inmost being, and in the hidden part You will make me know wisdom” (NASB). When we are honest with ourselves, we stop pushing down those feelings, and those emotions can be addressed.” (Pg. 74)
- How does being honest about your loss allow God to write the next chapter in your story?