Spirit-Led Woman

Want to receive SpiritLed Woman by email? Sign up here
woman mourning
(http://www.stockfreeimages.com)

The SpiritLed Woman podcast is empowering women weekly to follow their purpose in Christ and boldly walk in faith. Listen at charismapodcastnetwork.com.


Acknowledging that the loss has really happened is essential to healthy grieving. When a spouse dies many hesitate to use the word "dead," but acceptance of one's loss requires that the surviving spouse refer to the deceased as having died rather than "having gone away" or "being in heaven" or "having passed."

The reality is that death brings permanent separation in this life. This reality must be accepted for grief to receive its dues. The knowledge that our loved one is in heaven and that we will be reunited with him enables us to grieve in hope rather than without hope. This hope does not give us permission to deny grief its natural process, but it does ease the pain of acceptance (see 1 Thess. 4:13-14).

Through the eyes of her grief, Naomi perceived her future to be pretty bleak. Hopelessness often accompanies grieving. She said, "I am too old to have another husband" (Ruth 1:12).

We have no reason to believe that Naomi was an old lady, but grief can cause one to feel older than her years and take away all hope of things getting better. It can also take away a woman's hope that another relationship is possible.

Hopelessness is the primary symptom of depression, a normal emotional response to significant loss. Other symptoms are fatigue, loss of appetite, loss of interest in pleasures formerly enjoyed, insomnia, feelings of worthlessness, diminished concentration. If a mourner remains intensely depressed for more than a few weeks or begins having recurring suicidal thoughts, she should seek professional help, since counseling and medication are usually needed for recovery.

Then Naomi's grief spews out in anger, bitterness, doubt and suspicion toward the God she loved and served. "No, my daughters. It is more bitter for me than for you, because the Lord's hand has gone out against me! The Lord has afflicted me; the Almighty has brought misfortune upon me" (vv. 13,20).

Do I hear a gasp? Who of you will dare admit that you are angry with God for taking your husband and leaving you all alone, that you have questioned His motives or doubted His love for you because He has refused to tell you why?

God already knows your thoughts. Why not get honest with the all-knowing One, confessing your anger and disappointment so the two of you can be friends while you travel through the wilderness of grief? Don't hesitate to bare your soul to Jesus, who knows how you feel.

"For we do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but we have one who has been tempted in every way, just as we are--yet was without sin. Let us then approach the throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need" (Heb. 4:15-16).

The Lord Jesus revealed His humanness and grief at Lazarus' grave. He was so touched by Mary's and Martha's grief that He raised their brother from the dead. The prophet Isaiah referred to Him as a "man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief" (Is. 53:3, KJV).

THE PATH TO HEALING Naomi instinctively followed good grief guidelines. The first was to talk about her pain. She became vulnerable and honest with her family and friends regarding her thoughts and emotions. They formed her support group, and she felt safe with them.

Every grieving widow needs empathic people who will listen while she cries and talks, faithfully pray for her, refrain from judging when she spills her true feelings and thoughts, and resist advising her about appropriate and inappropriate grief, allowing her to grieve in her own way.

If I had been her therapist, I would have asked Naomi also to journal her feelings and thoughts. Getting these out in the open by recording them keeps us from burying or repressing our pain. The openness can protect us from a "denied or delayed grief" that frequently emerges disguised in physical or psychosomatic symptoms or illnesses.

Journaling also serves to map our grief journey. Mourners become encouraged when they recognize their progress and tend to develop a more positive attitude, which helps to alleviate depression.

Naomi clung to her memories of the good times with her husband and sons when she said, "I went away full" (Ruth 1:20, NIV). Death cannot take away our memories. Sooner or later, we must let go of our lost loved ones and reconnect with them through our memories.

Instead of trying to forget the good times, we should remember them often. Photograph albums are great for this. And talking about the deceased during gatherings of friends and family can resurrect the fun and laughter of former days and help mourners discover a new connection with their loved ones.

Those who are "left" should dismiss any guilt feelings about having fun times with family and friends. Survivor's guilt can cause spouses to feel as if it isn't fair to their departed loved ones to laugh and anticipate an exciting new life. But to experience healing in your grief journey, you must give yourself permission to let go of the way things were and embrace your new life without your partner.

Best Magazine Deal. Subscribe now and get 3 magazines for the price of 1. Get Charisma, SpiritLed Woman and Ministry Today, all for $24. YES - I want this deal!

3 Reasons Why you should read Life in the Spirit. 1) Get to know the Holy Spirit. 2) Learn to enter God's presence 3) Hear God's voice clearly! Click Here to draw closer to God!

Your Turn

Comment Guidelines
View/Add Comments
  • Roadblock

    6 Roadblocks That Will Stop Your Spiritual Growth

    God wants you to grow in your faith, but many of us get stuck along the way.

  • 2017 is the year that swords will clash.

    Prophetic Word: 2017 Will Bring a Clashing of Heaven and Hell

    "This is a time to cross over and not pull back."

  • Inner Healing Is the Fruit of the Spirit

    Inner Healing Is the Fruit of the Spirit

    I have been puzzled about the subject of inner healing for some time.

  • Bishop Eddie Long died at 63.

    Bishop Eddie Long Dead at 63

    "Although his transition leaves a void for those of us who loved him dearly, we can celebrate ...

  • The devil will try to silence you in any way he can. Don't give him the satisfaction.

    Satan's 2 Most Potent Lies to Render You Ineffective

    There's something in you so powerful that Satan doesn't want it out. Kyle Winkler reveals ...

  • Cindy Jacobs

    2017: Year of the Breakthrough

    "There will be a significant increase in miracles and signs and wonders."

  • Foot washing

    Shaking the Gates of Hell With a Basin of Water and a Towel

    "When I saw His foot, I knew He had come to take back territory the enemy had stolen from His ...

  • Growing relationship

    2017 Prophetic Word: The Supernatural Key to Growing Your Relationship With God

    It's vital that we understand what comes from God and what comes from the devil.

  • Are you willing to volunteer for God's offensive army?

    Prophetic Word: Preparing for God's World War 3

    God is searching for soldiers of the cross who are willing to volunteer for His offensive army.

  • Continue Your Journey with the Holy Spirit

    Continue Your Journey with the Holy Spirit

    Follow God on the most fulfilling journey of your life with Encounter the Holy Spirit! Break away from past hurts and press into the One who wants a personal encounter with you.

  • Dream the Unimaginable In His Presence

    Dream the Unimaginable In His Presence

    Reach your full potential and be led by His Spirit. In His Presence takes you to a deeper understanding of who God is and how he communicates with us.

  • Set Your Spirit on Fire

    Set Your Spirit on Fire

    Receive the power and gifts that come through the Holy Spirit Baptism. Don’t go empty-handed; accept all that He has for you! His power is available to those who ask.

  • Put on the Full Armor of God

    Put on the Full Armor of God

    Break every stronghold with the power of the Holy Spirit. Use the power of your tongue to declare and decree the Word of God. Witness heaven move on your behalf.

Use Desktop Layout
Charisma Magazine — Empowering believers for life in the Spirit