This week has a been a celebration of new life for my family – welcoming my sweet niece into the world. But I was tremendously saddened to learn that for a family friend, this is has turned into a celebration of life through the completely unexpected loss of their two year old granddaughter.
I never got to meet this adorable little girl, but I often saw her sweet face on Facebook. And the sadness that I am feeling must be compounded for her family. Times a million. Even these words “I am SO sorry for your loss!” almost holds a tinge of “I’m glad that I am not facing the loss of a child but sorry that you are.” A parent’s worst nightmare. Kids are ALWAYS supposed to outlive parents. Caskets should never be tiny. But they are sometimes.
I don’t know why. I can’t explain why. And if I am allowed to ask God a question someday in heaven, that will be my “Why?” I am convinced that God is near to the brokenhearted. But I am not so sure as to why parents’ hearts need to break in such pain. For every single day the rest of their lives, someone will be missing. Gone but not forgotten. Never, ever forgotten.
And as I am pondering these heavy thoughts today, but one verse comes to mind.
I Thessalonians 4:13 “And now, dear brothers and sisters, we want you to know what will happen to the believers who have diedso you will not grieve like people who have no hope.
How is this even possible? To have hope in your darkest moment? Only with the knowledge that God will never leave or forsake us. Ever.
This verse can be found in song by Steven Curtis Chapman. He has lived the loss – his young daughter died in a tragic accident. That event has profoundly affected his mission and his life. In case you are unfamiliar with his story, here is a brief recap.
Steven’s song “With Hope” reflects on the fact that we can be sure that our earthly end is not the ultimate end. We still have the promise of heaven. A fact to cling to even on such dark days. And to the family who lost their precious girl, please know that you are being prayed for. Others are grieving with you. That is probably a very small comfort right now. But still asking that God will give you glimpses of hope even in this!