When someone or something deeply precious is wrested from us, it leaves a deep wound. The very word ‘bereaved’ derives from the Dutch berauben – to rob or to plunder. We urgently need to let Christ’s love fill the hole.
If we turn inwards in the wrong way, the ensuing isolation leads to a hardening of the heart which effectively hinders the re-energising vitality of God. We need to allow ourselves appropriate time and space in which to grieve. In her excellent book ‘To live again’ (a book that is well worth tracking down) Catherine Marshall records how, when she lost her famous preacher husband, she made the conscious decision – much against her natural temperament – to allow other people to come close and walk the journey with her. Where love is, God is. Nothing means more to those who are grieving, and the presence of prayers and presence of loved ones to love us back to strength.
This brief extract is accompanied by a particularly moving piece of music written by a local composer and violinist, Michael Burnham.