3/1/16: Living with Grief


Nothing will ever be the same after a loved one dies. Living with the ache becomes our new normal. Unless it’s our first experience with death, we’ve been at that place before, and with all things being equal, we’ll reluctantly return to that same empty-feeling place again. However, it’s just like Jesus to give us a loving, gentle reminder from His own life concerning how to handle even this.

In Matthew chapter 14, we read about Herod the tetrarch. John the Baptist had chastised Herod by telling him it was not lawful for him to have his brother’s wife, Herodias. For this, Herod had thrown John into prison but that wasn’t enough for Herodias. She found occasion to have John beheaded. The Bible tells us, “When Jesus heard [that John was dead], He departed from there by boat to a deserted place by Himself. But when the multitudes heard it, they followed Him on foot from the cities” Matthew 14:13 (NKJ).

Jesus and John were related; they were probably cousins. Mary, Jesus’ mother, and Elizabeth, John’s mother were related and after both experienced miracle pregnancies, they birthed these boys just six months apart from each other. Naturally, Jesus would want to get away and mourn the loss of his friend, cousin, and forerunner in the ministry. But as we see in the verses above, the multitude who still had needs of their own, disregarded His personal grief, and sought Him out for what He could do for them.

And what was Jesus’ reaction? He didn’t stamp His foot and point His finger in their faces screaming, “Don’t you people have any sensitivity at all to a person’s pain? I’ve just lost my cousin. Back off!” Instead, Matthew 14:14 (NKJ) tells us, “And when Jesus went out He saw a great multitude; and He was moved with compassion for them, and healed their sick.” He even went on in verses 16 – 21 to miraculously feed the over 5,000 people who were in that crowd.

The ache in Jesus’ heart for John didn’t go away, but He didn’t turn away from meeting the needs of the people God had sent Him to seek and to save. John had fulfilled His ministry as the one who would announce the coming of Jesus. Now Jesus was here, so He went on with the work John knew He had come to do.

We have no other choice but to live with the grief of our loved ones who have passed away, but we can continue to courageously face the future as we minister to the multitudes still out there – diseased with both sickness and sin, hungry for both food and faith – in desperate need of the Savior we have.


©2016 Sharon Norris Elliott. Feel free to forward this devotion in its entirety, including this copyright line. Leave comments, ask questions, read past devotions, or subscribe to receive these devotions daily in your e-mail at www.sanewriter.wordpress.com. Also, periodically check in at www.LifeThatMatters.net to see what’s going on in the ministry.

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~ by sanewriter on March 1, 2016.

2 Responses to “3/1/16: Living with Grief”

  1. So timely. This was posted on the 29th anniversary of death of my Grandparents. Sometimes the pain of death linger long after the funeral..it is a scar that lasts a life time.

  2. “Where two or three are gathered in My name, there am I among them.” Matt. 18:20 ESV

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