Why Christians grieve

It has been suggested to me that my title (below) for the announcement of the death of a friend is inappropriate. The death of a friend is not sad news, I am told, but a cause for rejoicing that God has taken a believer home. Well, there is some truth in this way of thinking. Certainly, I rejoice in the “sure and certain hope of the resurrection to eternal life through Jesus Christ” but I do not think this obliterates all sadness. The sadness lies in the fact that a friend is now gone. Perhaps the sadness of separation and loss might be thought of as selfish but it seems to me that it is present most where love is greatest. Did not Jesus weep when his friend Lazarus died even though he knew he was about to raise him up? Christians do not grieve as those without hope but they still grieve. I am firmly of the opinion that even when hope is abundant there is sadness in the death of a loved one.

3 Responses

  1. I absolutely agree with you. Last Remembrance Sunday I preached on ‘Christian grieving’, partly in response to the kind of unhelpful comment you received.

  2. I think that the subject of grieving is so painful, that there is a tendency to minimize its pain through certain beliefs. It is my experience that there is a certain amount of denial that is the culprit and modifier of ways people deal with grief. sigh…too deep?
    I do not think anyone wants to fry the person that suggested dealing with death in a positive nature. However, it is even more unfair to suggest that sadness cannot be a conclusion that one may write.
    Indeed it is wonderful that someone whom may have been suffering has finally passed and is heading toward glory but it is certainly sad and painful for those that are left behind.
    I remember receiving this detail from a great Pastor friend of mine.

  3. lol…i think i just recapped everything Robert wrote without realizing it. Forgive me.

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