Working Through Grief

God is our refuge and strength, A very present help in trouble.

Psalms 46:1

Whenever we experience a loss, big or small, grief and healing proceed in recognizable stages. Knowing what these stages are can help us understand ourselves  and be patient with ourselves as we process our pain.

When Linda first expected that her husband of twenty-two years was having an affair, she immediately went into the first stage, shock and denial. She convinced herself that nothing was going on. And since the affair was short-lived, she managed to stay in denial until her husband confessed. Then came the anger. For almost two months, Linda spewed fury on everyone around her. As the  anger began to subside, she began bargaining with God, asking Him to kill her husband and send her a fine, faithful Christian man.

When depression set in, Linda entered counseling. Her therapist helped her sort through the events of the preceding months, separating lies from truth. Then Linda, armed with a healthier self-concept, proceeded to the last stage of grief-acceptance and adjustment. She chose to stay with her husband, but to continue in therapy for awhile. They have now renewed their commitment to God and to each other.

Thought:  When I experience loss, I will patiently work through my grief with the help of God and, if possible, another person.


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