Tuesday, September 10, 2013

what grief looks like

I sat at my kitchen table and watched the Jason's Deli delivery car pull up across the street.

It's barely 8:00 in the morning and my eighty year-old neighbor Mrs. Arlena is having food delivered.

That's what grief looks like.

Last week she knocked on my door and to tell me that her adult daughter, Cindy, didn't survive her heart surgery. Actually, she came to apologize for not being home when I came over to drop off barbecue beef sandwiches, salad, and brownies the night before.

Grief also looks like apologizing for being at the hospital saying goodbye to your daughter instead of at your door to receive a plate of brownies. It doesn't always make sense.

I sat with her in my dining room. Under the ceiling I painted dark blue, I held her hand as she cried and told me again and again that she didn't know how she would go on without Cindy.

I was wondering the same thing.

For years now, I have watched them both struggle with their health together, live together, and survive together. It was a symbiotic relationship; they loved each other and lived for each other.

The Lady and I slipped notes to Arlena in her mailbox yesterday. My letter offered help, promised to pray. The Lady's letter just said, "I LOVe yOU, MRs. ARLENa. FRoM FINLEY." and included a drawing of butterflies floating in outer space.

The Jason's Deli car makes me think I should offer to bring her dinner again, too. Because grief should never look like something that leaves you to fend for yourself.

Please pray for my friend Arlena. She is beginning a new life again at eighty, but like everyone who belongs to Jesus, she will never be left alone because:


He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away.

He who was seated on the throne said, “I am making everything new!” Then he said, “Write this down, for these words are trustworthy and true.”

He said to me: “It is done. I am the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning and the End. To the thirsty I will give water without cost from the spring of the water of life."
-Revelation 21:4-6


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