“Blessed are those who mourn for they shall be comforted.”
Matthew 5: 4
My father died 15 years ago today. For me, every March 4th is a time of reflection on the nature of grief.
The Beatitudes or blessings found in the sermon on the mount, say that those who mourn will be comforted. That promise is easier for some to accept than others. I have dear friends who are people of strong faith. They had to bury a child. I cannot imagine how hard it would be to be comforted in that kind of grief.
My dad was a wonderful man. He worked hard all of his life to take care of his family. He was a devoted husband and father. He was also a devoted Christian. In his later years, he became my best friend. Even this many years later, I still miss him. I wish I could confer with him in those times when I need his advice. I wish I had more chances to tell him how much I loved him and appreciated him.
So now, every once in a while, and on March 4 in particular, I talk to him. I share what is going on in my life. I try to discern what his advice would be. I try to remember what a great man he was. As Dan Fogelberg sang, “My life has been a poor attempt to imitate the man. I’m just a living legacy to the leader of the band.”
And in those talks, I DO find comfort. I am comforted of my memories of the time we had together in this life. And I am comforted in the wonder of the faith that he lived and taught me that there will be no limit to the time we will spend together on the other side.
So if you still grieve the loss of someone, let the words of Jesus give you hope. You will never “get over it.” And you will never be the same. But you can find comfort in the promise that God understands your grief. A little boy was at the neighbor’s house visiting a man who had just lost his wife of 60 years. The boy’s mother said, “You shouldn’t be bothered Mr. Smith. What were you doing over there anyway?” The boy said, “I was just helping him cry.” Sometimes I think that God weeps with us in the sorrow of our loss. But God also reminds us that he is waiting on sorrow’s other side for a reunion of love.
I’ll see you later Dad.