Over 118,000 people in search of enlightenment came to Angel Stadium to witness the 21st annual Southern California Harvest Crusades with evangelist Greg Laurie and Grammy Award-winning Christian artist and adoption advocate, Steven Curtis Chapman. The crusades’ message of hope was enough to create three evenings of intimate spiritual experience, blessing those in need of strength and courage.
The Grieving Process: Dealing with Loss and Suffering
We’ve all been there. One way or another, we’ve lost someone dear to us—a child, spouse, parent, friend; we’ve ended relationships that broke our hearts; we’ve lost jobs, careers and wealth. We all know how “rock bottom” feels like, but not many realize that we can also choose to react to it differently.
As Laurie described to the audience the pain he went through after losing his son, Christopher, in a car crash two years ago, he asked a question we are all very familiar with: “Why do bad things happen?”
And the truth is, this is one question no one really knows the answer to. However, Greg Laurie said, “Christians do not know sorrow as those who have no hope because we will see our loved ones again. As a Christian, you are assured by that hope.” Steven Curtis Chapman, whose youngest daughter—Maria Sue—died from a tragic car accident in 2008, added, “God restores and redeems what He takes away. There are no words for the pain of loss, but our hope is in the resurrection. Emmanuel, God is with us.”
Good Grief: Overcoming the Pain of Loss
Healing only happens after you’ve genuinely mourned. Take time to feel the pain of what will soon be the past, so you can live more fully in the present. And when you’re ready, share your feelings with others and let it all out. Cry, if you feel like crying. But remind yourself that what you’re going through will inevitably pass.
Get help. Talk to friends or relatives who are great listeners, or join support groups that can be there for you during the grieving process. Seek counselling from your church, and trust in your faith to carry you through trying times. As Steven Curtis Chapman said after the death of his daughter, “Worship only becomes true worship when we’ve started from a desperate place, where our response to Him is different.”
Recommended Reading and Listening
Read more about the pain of loss and the power of faith that heals even the deepest wounds in Mary Beth Chapman’s Choosing to See. This book tells the story of how the wife of contemporary Christian music artist, Steven Curtis Chapman, struggled to heal after the loss of her daughter, and the unexpected path God has placed her on.
Listen to Beauty Will Rise—a collection of 12 new and profound songs from Steven Curtis Chapman. Created as he walked through the darkness of the loss of his daughter, Maria, this part lament, part praise, part grief, part hope and part pondering play list resonates as Chapman’s personal Psalms.