It comes in the form of a phone call, a letter, the distraught look of the doctor across the desk. You try to prepare yourself. But no matter how the news is delivered, it hits you like a punch in the gut. You reel back from the blow. Shock sets in. You wonder what you’re going to do. Life as you know it will never be the same again.
I know I’m not the only one who is or has gone through something, whether that is the death of a loved one, news that the cancer is back, or the loss of a job. And if you’re like me, you find your confidence shaken. What you once thought you believed you’re not sure about anymore. So what do you do?
As I prepared for this post, I read an article about the five stages of grief. As I read, it hit me: I was experiencing those stages. You do not need to experience death in order to have your world turned upside down. At first I found myself in denial. I kept thinking there had to be some mistake; that this was some kind of strange nightmare and I would eventually wake up, right?
But soon reality set in and I found myself angry. Really angry. I wanted an answer for why my husband had lost his job. But none came.
Then I began to bargain with God. I told God I would do anything if he would just get my family safely through this. Being a planner, I began to make plans after plans of what I would do to keep my family afloat. No matter the cost to myself, I would do what it took to get my family safely to the other side.
More days past and my plans fell to the wayside. Depression set in. I will admit its still here, sapping my heart and mind, clouding my vision. I once heard the Chinese symbol for perseverance was a heart with a dagger in it. I’m not sure if that’s true, but that is what life feels like right now. You hurt so bad you don’t want to move. But you must. Because life goes on.
The last stage of grief is acceptance. I can feel it on the horizon. But I’m scared of it. I’m afraid that if I accept what has happened, then that will make it okay. I know it’s illogical, but many times there is no logic in grief. Only deep intense feelings.
So where is God in all of this? Where is God during the hurts and heartache? I will be honest and say I don’t know why God allowed Dan to lose his job. I do not know what our future holds. And I hurt right now. But one thing I know, that in darkness there is light.
The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness can never extinguish it. John 1:5
That light is Jesus. No matter how dark life gets, it can never extinguish God. I am clinging to that promise now. And though I can’t see Him through all the pain, I know God is holding me. For if His hands can hold every star in the sky and He cares about even the smallest bird, then I know He will carry me through.