God’s Word has become so very rich since Becca’s death, even in preparing for what I wanted to say at her funeral. But that isn’t usually the case for those who are grieving the death of a child.
Sometimes it takes two to three years for the pain and fog to lift to be able to even make sense of what is being read (which happened to me for quite a while in the deepest part of my grief). Or, these grieving parents are angry and struggling with their faith, like the woman I heard from yesterday who lost her son five years ago, and just this week walked out of a church service because she still can’t stand to hear people say that God is good.
I have to say that for me personally, many verses I have been taught or have seen a certain way (some of them since I was very young) have become a life-line of hope in a whole new light.
God tells us that His Word is a lamp to our feet and a light to our paths (Psalm 119:105). And in the depth of darkness that we find ourselves in after the death of our child, or any deep loss or tragedy, we desperately need any tiny pinhole of light that we can get.
I would like to share one of those scriptures that has taken on a totally new meaning to me now.
Ephesians 3:20 says talks about God being able “to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us.”
I have always heard this verse in the context of things like, “When you ask God for a good job, you can claim this verse and He will give you even a better job than you asked for.”
Or I have heard Christian leaders share about applying this verse to something they are praying for (like having a ministry bigger than they could ever imagine) and then adding in a laughing humorous way, “and I can imagine a whole lot!”
As I was reading through the book of Ephesians one day, I realized how much that verse truly applies to those of us who find ourselves in an unwanted and indescribable darkness of deep grief, tragedy and trauma.
We all think and say things like, “I can’t imagine EVER getting out of this pain and darkness.” “I can’t EVER imagine living life without my child.” Or, “God, when will I stop hurting so much?”
And that is exactly where the truth of this verse comes in. God promises that He is able to do more than we could ask for, or imagine! We cannot imagine ever coming out of our painful darkness to a place of living a life of purpose and meaning again. It feels impossible. But He can, and He will do what we cannot even imagine!
Any time we cry out to Him from that place of horrendous pain, even the smallest plea of, “God HELP me!” He goes to work making good on that very promise! Many times, it doesn’t seem like it because often nothing seems to change. We can go days, weeks and even months in the same suffocating darkness and turmoil. As a parent who has to learn how to live again after the death of their child, that grief journey is a long and very slow process to work through. So are other deep tragedies and losses. But God is at work, because we cried out, allowing His power to be at work within us.
So, it’s okay if you cannot imagine ever having hope, light, or purpose in your life ever again. God’s got this! And until that time comes, ask God to send loving, gracious people your way, who will walk with you through the darkness.
GPS Hope exists to walk with grieving parents through the suffocating darkness of child-loss to a place of hope, light and purpose.
We also support families, friends and coworkers who want to know how to support these parents both short and long-term.
- If you are not a bereaved parent but want to support those who are, or want to follow us as we give hope to these precious parents, please connect with us at Friends of GPS Hope on Facebook.
- If you are a bereaved parent, we encourage you to connect with us on Facebook.
- Subscribe to Laura’s YouTube channel for grieving parents.