Death was not God’s idea when He created the world. God only gives life. God is the one who gave life to your child and mine. And He did not make them die.
Even though God did not create death, He knew it would be part of life, and made sure that He still had the final say, because when we die, it is not a final goodbye. It is only a transition from our earthly realm into His spiritual realm.
I know; death feels so final. When my daughter, Becca, died, I was thrown into such a horrific place of darkness. I knew where she was, and I publicly proclaimed it boldly at her funeral. But that didn’t keep me from the darkness and fog that took over my life for many, many months, even stretching into at least two years.
One thing that helped me, that I wish I had grasped sooner, is that this is only a temporary separation. I knew that in my head, but for some reason my heart had a much harder time accepting that as a truth I could hold onto, to pull me out of my darkness. All I could see is that she isn’t with me now, and how unfair and painful that was to me, to her dad, her siblings and grandparents. All I could think about was what she would miss, and what we would miss not having her here with us.
In fact, looking back on it, I was almost consumed with the thoughts of what I had lost from this earth, to the point of almost having panic attacks when thinking about being here for one year, five years, ten years without Becca. There were times I could barely breathe from the pain of it.
But God in His graciousness stepped in over and over again, as I laid my pain at His feet, groaning and sobbing to Him for help.
One of the things the Holy Spirit spoke to me was that I am not getting further away from Becca. Every day I am here on this earth brings me closer to her, as I get closer to my own transition. That made a huge difference in how I was able to start seeing things through His eyes of love instead of my own eyes of loss.
One of my favorite scriptures for many years, even before Becca died, has been Romans 8:18. It reads, “I believe that the present suffering is nothing compared to the coming glory that is going to be revealed to us.” (CEB)
That verse is now life to me like never before. Those of us who know the pain and suffering of grieving the death of our child, a pain that is beyond any words, have something to look forward to for sure! If the glory to come is so fantastic that it cannot even be compared to the depth of our suffering, then I say bring it on!
Another translation says, “This is how I work it out. The sufferings we go through in the present time are not worth putting in the scale alongside the glory that is going to be unveiled for us.” (NTE) I love how it says we have to work it out, because that is exactly what has to happen.
And that whole thing about how the glory we will experience will far outweigh our greatest pain and suffering here on this earth… I don’t know about you, but to me, it is pretty mind-boggling to think our children are already experiencing it and know what that glory is like.
But in the meantime, we are left with holding onto Him as He carries us through the darkness, allowing Him to breathe life back into us.
It may seem impossible, as most of us on this road ahead of you believed as well, but you really can have a life of hope and light, and even a life with purpose and meaning again. It looks different, but it’s kind of like learning to live with an amputation. A part of our very being has been cut off from us, and it takes a long time to heal and learn how to live with that piece of us missing.
But allowing the truth to seep deep in our hearts that this is only temporary, and what is to come is so much better that this will all be forgotten, will help tremendously.
I can’t talk about the separation from our children not being permanent without also bringing in 2 Corinthians 4:18. “We don’t focus our attention on what is seen but on what is unseen. For what is seen is temporary, but the unseen realm is eternal.” (TPT)
The VOICE translation says we “focus on the things we cannot see, which live on and on.” That is exciting to me; to think that our children are already in the place where nothing harmful or hurtful can ever touch them again, including our own death.
Have you ever thought about that? We have taken the pain for them. They will never have to experience the pain and grief of our death when it is our turn to transfer into the heavenly realm! I know as a parent, I am always thankful when I can carry a burden so that my children don’t have to carry it. And this is the ultimate burden we can carry for them. They will never have to go through the painful grief of our death.
I love how the Message Bible says it.
So we’re not giving up. How could we! Even though on the outside it often looks like things are falling apart on us, on the inside, where God is making new life, not a day goes by without his unfolding grace. These hard times are small potatoes compared to the coming good times, the lavish celebration prepared for us. There’s far more here than meets the eye. The things we see now are here today, gone tomorrow. But the things we can’t see now will last forever.
What we are going through now will seem like nothing, once we join our children in heaven and partake in the glory they are now part of.
Jesus said in Matthew 6:21 that your heart will always be where your treasure is. We have an extremely valuable treasure in heaven, so it makes sense that our heart will be there until we can see and touch that treasure once again.
We are ALL eternal beings. Our children are not gone forever. We are just separated temporarily. They are living on and on in a place we will eventually be also. Praise God, He made a way that our separation is only temporary.
We have put together a list of Thirty-Six Scriptures of Hope that can be printed out to read and meditate on. If you would like to have this sent directly to you, just let us know below.
Expressions of Hope is written by author, speaker and singer Laura Diehl. She and her husband, Dave, are the founders of Grieving Parents Sharing Hope (GPS Hope). Dave and Laura travel full time in their Hope Mobile (a 38-foot motor home) to be more easily available for speaking and ministry requests, including being invited to hold one-day GPS Hope & Healing conferences.
Laura is a national keynote speaker and has also been a workshop speaker for events such as The Compassionate Friends and Bereaved Parents USA national conferences, along with being a guest on radio shows, podcasts and other media channels such as webinars with Open to Hope.
If you would like more information about Laura as a speaker for your next event or want more information on hosting a GPS Hope & Healing conference, click here.
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 a bereaved parent, we encourage you to connect with us on Facebook.
- 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.
- Subscribe to Laura’s YouTube channel.