When I began this blog, I knew that writing once a week would have to work in with my schedule and my life in general, something that entails ups and downs. I also knew that I would often revive my grief experiences, just as I do when I present programs. All of these things provide opportunity for coming closer to Jesus through pain, exploration of Scripture, and deeper understanding.
What I did not expect was to be writing a blog entry at a time when fresh grief surrounds me. Today I learned that a favorite cousin is suffering from cancer which has spread and is now in hospice care. He is someone I have known and treasured my whole life, and even though I know that his Christian faith is strong and his place in Heaven is assured, I am hurting.
One horrible side effect of grief for some people is guilt, and I really feel for them. In my case, there is no guilt but there is some regret, something that I think most grieving people face at least to some extent. When my cousin’s older brother died, we had some very special time to talk, and I learned more of his belief in Jesus as well as his life in Maine.
I promised to visit him and his wonderful wife and hopefully meet more of their grown family. They had a favorite camping spot in the forest in Maine, and my love of such places drew me even more to the idea of spending time with them there. Unfortunately, my promise to him seemed to have no timeline, and it was easy to think I would make that visit someday, a someday that always seemed possible.
Instead, I must treasure that talk of some time ago and all of the contact we have had by mail, by Facebook, and by other means. Despite my regrets, I know that my cousin knows that I love him and pray for him. I can turn to Jesus’ words and be reassured that He blesses such relationships and comforts us when we grieve. Thank God for faith!
I just want to continue to share ideas about grief and life with people who long as I do for comfort and understanding.