This past week our church family experienced a loss. A friend, family member, and person who was a part of our community passed away and went home to be with Jesus.
Whenever loss happens to a community, it affects each person differently. Some are closely connected and deeply affected, others aren’t affected in the same way. But the point isn’t how we are affected but how we, as a community, respond. The point isn’t just how loss affects you or I, but how we, as a whole ,can act.
So what should a community do when loss occurs?
Well this is a time to support, share, and care. Andrew Root writes this “God is present when death is shared, when suffering is joined”. This is so true. When you share in people’s grief, when you join their suffering, when you demonstrate you care, you make God real and tangible. God becomes present when we give food, write a note of encouragement, or ask someone for their favorite memory of their loved one. Because when we do that, we are no longer seeing them go through grief but entering it; we are no longer standing near them,but with them and that makes all the difference.
So today even if your community isn’t going through loss like ours is, remember this: “God is present when death is shared, when suffering is joined”. Don’t shy away from people in need but join them. Church is a place where people journey together towards Jesus and in difficult times, it’s when this needs to be demonstrated most.
So today why not journey with someone. My guess is that you know someone who has experienced loss in the past few weeks, months, or years. Why not write them, call them, or text and let them know you are praying and thinking about them. Why not join them where they are at, and bring God with you.
Because that’s what a community does – joins together and find God in our midst, no matter what we are going through…