Coping with the loss of someone can be very hard but there is a way through.
It is good to understand that grief is a process and it looks different for every person. You may feel times of anger, emptiness, despair, tears, positivity and other emotions. You may well think you see the lost person when you see someone else, expect them to return, dream about them, see their face in your mind. You may even wander if they aren’t really dead. Grief can suddenly hit you at any moment.
Knowing all of this is helpful because you can understand that the feelings you have are normal and are shared by every other person. It is also helpful because you know that where you are now does not have to be your end point. There is a way through.
When you lose someone, your ‘normal’ changes. A good way to think of life is that there is a ‘new normal’.
It may be useful to talk to others. It may be useful to write down how you are feeling. It could even be useful to write a ‘letter’ to the person you have lost. It is also important to deal with any feelings of guilt or regret because however you feel, these aren’t helpful in the long run.
God is full of compassion and love
I don’t know what you think when you hear about ‘God’..?
The Bible talks about God as being the “Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our troubles…” We know that God (as a Father) experienced loss when Jesus was crucified on the cross (the Easter story). Although Jesus then rose from the dead (it’s not just a myth, just look at the evidence with an open mind), while he was alive, Jesus also lost friends and cried and grieved for and with them.
When my brother was killed, I found a huge amount of peace because I knew that people were praying for me. I didn’t believe in God at the time but my brother’s death turned my life around – the right way up! But I knew the reality of God’s comfort through all the pain, the hurt, the doubts and the loneliness of missing a loved one. So I really understand the hurt that people go through and the truth that God will comfort you. Just ask him or find a church that will support you.
One other secret that may help you is that when you are hurting, don’t hold onto that pain inside yourself. Allow yourself to let the pain out in a healthy way. And one great way is to go and help someone else. “You mean help someone when I am hurting?” Yes! You will be amazed how you will find comfort when you help someone else. It will also help your healing.
After my brother was killed, the way through for me was to help others, especially young people. So I can testify that helping others is a good way to channel your pain positively.
Beyond this, we know that loss is something that caused Jesus pain when he was alive on the earth. His friend died and we read that ‘Jesus wept’. He felt sadness and pain and grief. When we feel pain, there is often very little hope we can find around us. But God offers you hope and he wants to help. All you have to do is ask Him by just saying ‘God I need your help, help me cope with this pain. Turn things round in my life as I don’t feel I can cope. I know you can.’ And expect to see real change.
And read the Bible (God’s words that have been written down). In there you’ll find so much help in the books smack in the middle of the Bible called ‘Psalms’. They’re full of real life, real pain and real hope.