Recently, I recieved an email from Faith Gateway with a devotional lead by Max Lucado. Max was writing on grief and loss, particularirly in response to the horrific shootings in Charleston. A portion of his words really hit home.
Max writes. . .
Flooded eyes don’t represent a faithless heart. A person can enter a cemetery Jesus-certain of life after death and still have a Twin Tower crater in the heart. Christ did. He wept, and he knew he was ten minutes from seeing a living Lazarus!
And His tears give you permission to shed your own. Grief does not mean you don’t trust; it simply means you can’t stand the thought of another day without the Jacob or Lazarus of your life.
If Jesus gave the love, He understands the tears. So grieve, but don’t grieve like those who don’t know the rest of this story.
And as I sat there reading, I was also encouraged because like Max points out, I know how the story ends. I know the secret to this whole messy thing of a life. I know that ultimately Christ died, paid the ultimate price, the ultimate suffering, and moved mountains while on this earth so that we can stand firm on hope, even in the midst of the tears.
So we grieve, but we know the rest of the story. I can't imagine not. Can you? So then I have to share it. Because somewhere someone is hurting and thinking that their Lazarus is gone and that is it, the end of the story, and that the grave won the final tug between life and death.
But a sweeter day is coming, friends. A day where the tears stop for good and all ones that have gone before us will greet us and show us around and proclaim how much sweeter heaven is than anything they ever experienced on earth.
So grieve and cry and let yourself go there, but remember the rest of the story. Because the rest of the story has the final word. Hope wins.
I pray also that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in order that you may know the hope to which he has called you, the riches of his glorious inheritance in the saints, and his incomparable great power for us who believe. That power is like the working of his mighty strength, which he exerted in Christ when he raised him from the dead and seated him at his right hand in the heavenly realms (Ephesians 1:18-20).