Chronic Illness & Grief

On suffering, I felt like I’d heard it all inside and outside the church. Both were found lacking. We’ve forgotten true compassion (to come alongside and suffer with), and we’ve lost our capacity for long-suffering (alongside others and our own).

When two of our girls were in a very traumatic 4-wheeler accident, resulting in an 8-year string of reconstructive surgeries, battling depression, suicide, and false guilt, I cried out to God: “If we have to go through this, I want to know the TRUTH about suffering! AND please bring beauty from these ashes, like you promise!”

Before the accident, I’d been sick about 8 years. I didn’t understand back then my gut was exploding in reaction to my own childhood trauma, fear, and anxiety. As I sought God for deep healing, some of the illness retreated.

Enter the girls’ accident and all that followed like a shadow you can’t lose. There was job loss, home loss – even loss of our cars through accident and destruction. While I poured myself into my children and husband, tending everyone’s heart, mind, spirit, and body so they could hopefully rise from the ashes, my own body fell completely apart when the last kid flew the nest.

The body keeps the score of every single hit.

Chronic turned to ravishing. Illnesses imploded the last 4 years. (read more on chronic illness & trauma HERE)

Chronic Illness & Grief✔️Be careful the words you speak when you do not know everything a person holds inside the story of her life when it is being told by her body.CLICK TO TWEETChronic Illness & Grief✔️Be slow to speak when you do not know the magnitude of loss because of the story her body is telling.CLICK TO TWEET

Whether that person is you or someone you know:

⚪️Instead of diminishing, dismissing, or deflecting the pain; give the gift of listening to and honoring it.

⚪️Be honest about the pain, name and grieve it with God – this is not speaking words of death. It will not bring more sickness.

🟣It was when I held it in, didn’t grieve, and didn’t express the pain that it was the death of me. When I started naming the losses to Jesus and mourning them, I began to come alive again!!

What do you need to name? | What do you need to free yourself to grieve so you can receive the comfort of God? | Who can you come alongside to honor & comfort?

I’d love to hear from you in the comments.

In my newsletter, I explore how God regards your pain, how he takes specific notice, care, and concern of your situation. Even greater, to honor the details of your suffering. Subscribe below to receive more.

Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our affliction, so that we may be able to comfort those are in any affliction with the same comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God. ~2 Corinthians 1:3-7

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