“The lesson of wisdom is, be not dismayed by soul-trouble. Count it no strange thing, but a part of ordinary ministerial experience… Live by the day, by the hour… Be not surprised when men fail you; it is a failing world… Be content to be nothing, for that is what you are.”
— C.H. Spurgeon
There is a deeper vision for life, yet only out of the grief experience.
How ironic that love is the best of life, loss is the worst of life, yet love causes loss. How paradoxical that joy is the halcyon experience, grief is the pits, yet grief makes for the truest joy — once it’s been traversed. How enigmatic, hope is the air we breathe, despair suffocates us, yet hope’s breadth cannot be fully known without having first reached the cavernous depths of a fuller despair.
It is a hard lesson in life that those who ascend the heights of Everest are those who have learned to live in fissures of a crevice.
Nobody tells us when we sink to the abyss — a black hole for the senses — that we will be broken time and time again. Many times we will rise only to sink again. We would not enter it if we knew it. But, then again, entering it, and then continuing through it, has become the making of us!
God knows we would not enter into grief without having first committed our hearts and souls to a love we just cannot give up on. The Lord ensures we are committed, first. In our early days, we believe in a God that will take pleasure in blessing us; only later do we find that the Lord’s way of blessing us is through a firestorm. The conflagration is simply the reality that we were too naïve to accept earlier on. We just cannot handle too much truth too early on.
We know that we are significant to God, worthy, of value, and deeply loved. But it might help us more if we weren’t too perturbed that we are, in fact, nothing — of achievement. All our works — and every good work — are sustained by our faith, alone, by God’s grace, alone.
Here’s a promise to believe in:
The more we suffer, and, the better we take to the common sufferings of life, the better we are compensated with growth — and we should always be surprised by how God grows us through such difficulties.
The wisdom in grief is the deeper vision we attain to as we suffer loss patiently.
Not everyone wants deeper vision, but, at times in life, life doesn’t offer us a choice.
© 2015 Steve Wickham.