These words from Romans 12v15 speak volumes as I think about Greg Laurie and his family who lost their beloved son, brother, husband, father and friend, Christopher, last Thursday. As I’ve prayed for his sweet wife (who I don’t know personally), I ache when I think about the magnitude of pain she must be in as she begins to come to terms with this great loss. She and her husband have one little girl and are expecting their second daughter in November.
Most of us have either experienced the loss of a loved one or been close to someone who has. As we sit shiv-ah with them, we watch them to make sure they are okay, are being cared for and keep a careful eye on how they are doing in the midst of devastation. Meanwhile we pray. We pray for the Great Comforter to bring peace that surpasses all understanding. Jesus says, “blessed are those who mourn for they will be comforted.” We pray for the fulfillment of this promise. We pray for hope in times of despair and for joy to come in the place of mourning.
It’s always stunning to watch how God carries His people when they are in tremendous grief as they sometimes even struggle to put their hope and trust in Him. As I pray for that joy to come in the place of mourning, it’s almost as if I want to rush God or rush the bereaved through the grief because I don’t want them to be sad. But, it is really is in these times of deep sadness that the Father chooses to stake our roots deeper. Even those with the greatest faith experience such digging.
If you want some real encouragement in your faith today, if you want to see unshakable faith, watch this video of Greg Laurie at church on Sunday titled “I Still Believe.” Grab a box of tissues though because you won’t get away without some tears. Not only will it help you to mourn with those who mourn, but you will witness what it means to rejoice and rejoice in the Lord always.
Let’s continue to pray for the Laurie family over the next few days, weeks and months ahead. As sisters, let’s specifically lift up Christopher’s wife Brittany, his daughter Stella, soon to be daughter, and his mom, Cathe. Let’s sit shiv-ah, even from a distance, and mourn with those who mourn.
God bless you,