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Out of the pit…

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He will wipe away every tear from their eyes, and death shall be no more, neither shall there be mourning, not crying, nor pain anymore, for the former things have passed away Revelation 21:4

As Christians we know that death is not the finality. We learned this long ago. We know it in our hearts. Yet, when a loved one dies, rather than feeling joy for the rebirth of loved one in heaven, we feel sadness. There are feelings of our own deadness and misery when our loved one leaves us. Even though we know that the person we knew on earth, the one who suffered with an illness that could not be cured, is no longer in pain, we feel worse than ever.  We know we should rejoice, but instead we feel deep relentless sorrow. Days pass by and there we are, in the pit of despair for so long.

“And everyone who lives and believes in me shall never die. Do you believe this?” John 11:26

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Ever so slowly, day after day, we may plod along still feeling the sadness. We attend the ceremonies, speak with family, friends, and others offering sympathy. We read the cards, we try to read Bible passages, but somehow, everything still isn’t quite right. Things just feel so sad.

Then, from nowhere, God sends us a message of hope. It might be from a kind word that friend said, a deed that someone did for us, or a passage from the wonderful written words of God. For me, it came from a Facebook message sent to me by someone I never met. Perhaps it was the timing of the message. At that moment, God knew I was ready to hear the message and find hope: “Wishing you well and hoping your days are getting better since the loss of your dad. Isn’t it great knowing we will see them again one day!” And my only thought was “Yes, that is great! We will see them again one day!’ I sent a message back telling this wonderful person that she had no idea how much the message meant. It meant I was going to look upward once again and get out of the pit.

Jesus said to her, “I am the resurrection and the life. Whoever believes in me, though he die, yet shall he live John 11:25.

Today is the first day of hope. There is still work to do, errands to run, and writing to complete. Intermittent tears continue. But there is a sense of calmness and purpose. Finally, today I have a feeling of hope and peacefulness. I am climbing out of the pit. It may take time, but I know with God’s love and support, life on earth will move forward once again.

And he said to him, ‘Truly, I say to you, today you will be with me in Paradise‘” Luke 23:43.

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