From my journal dated June 21, 2002:
Oh, God. What is the matter with Your people that they would leave us so alone at a time like this? Where are Your people to walk with us, stand by us, not abandon us in our grief?
Joe’s been so sad this week, struggled so much. I sent out an email to the people we know best in this area…and not one person even called or responded. How can we be left so alone? No encouragement. No hugs. We’ve needed them since we have no biological family here. Where is our [church] family? We can’t bear this grief alone. They leave me alone. They leave Joe alone. They leave Jenna alone.
No one should have to do this alone.
I know it’s hard. It’s more than just a few-minute visit. It’s a walking beside us in the worst possible situation – losing a great son. But does that mean we have to be alone? Jesus laid down His life for us. Sacrificial giving. Aren’t we to be like Christ?
I know I haven’t lived that way. I should be preaching to myself. We are so much about self – what bothers us, what we need to do in our busy lives, excuses for what’s important for us to do for ourselves.
Forgive me, God. Help me to not live that way any more.
If we can’t go out of our way in little daily things in considerate ways for others and to comfort others, how can we be expected to go above and beyond in a big grief situation like this? I don’t know if I would have understood had I not been here. But it’s an understanding a such a great price. Too high a price.
People all around the world suffer losses like this. Be close to them, God. Great Holy Spirit, Comforter, be a comfort to all of us who grieve. Comfort us that we may comfort others “with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God.” (2 Cor. 1:4) Isn’t that what You want, for us to be there and comfort each other? Help me to remember that.
I read somewhere that the word “comfort” is derived from the words “con” or “com” (meaning “with”) and “fortis” (meaning “to strengthen much”). To be with, to strengthen much. Really something to think about.