Are you, or someone close to you, grieving? Grief is not the same as sadness. Grief is a deeper emotion because it is always linked to having lost a loved one or something of importance to you.

That can be the loss of your homeland, family or social environment, e.g. due to fleeing or a major move, or the loss of your job, life dream or health.

Bearing up in the grief process

It is a good thing if people are around to give a grieving person love, support and consolation. But the only the all-powerful God, who became man in Jesus Christ and understands all our feelings, can give us human beings the deepest possible consolation. If you come to know this God, you can experience deep-seated comfort because He has promised us that “Blessed are those who mourn for they shall be comforted.” (Matthew 5:4)

In your everyday life it is important not to go into your shell when grieving. Look for at least one person you can show your feelings to. It can be helpful to talk to other people who are grieving in a similar way to you. Grieving is a task that needs time. A clearly structured daily routine can give you support. Even though it is hurtful, it helps to allow your sorrow and strong feelings to come out. Take time for the grieving process, the time you need to come to terms with your loss.

Life is all about light and shadow, joy and sadness, even though grief is often hard to handle. It can be a help to preserve the good memories from the past while consciously opening up to what is new. That is a challenge, but a new perspective allows hope to grow along with the courage to face life again.

Death and eternity

All this is equally true when you are mourning the death of a loved one. It’s of particular comfort if you know that this person has passed on to eternal life with God and they are in the best possible place. God has promised this to all who, during their life, have accepted Jesus’ death and resurrection and are thus reconciled with God (2 Corinthians 5:15-18). If you are living in this reconciled state, there is the additional joy of knowing you will be reunited with the loved one in eternity.

If you do not have the comfort and assurance of eternal life with God and would like to find out more, just talk to the person who drew your attention to Deutschland-Begleiter.de. Or get in touch with a Christian church where you will find people who are living in a personal relationship with the living God and can accompany you on your path through life. You can also turn to God directly in prayer and through reading the Bible. “If you seek me with your whole heart, I will be found by you.” (Jeremiah 29:13-14) God wants a relationship with you – and is waiting for you!

Accompanying grieving individuals – an important service

Foto: Katarzyna Bialasiewicz, 123rf.de

The best way of helping a grieving person is to be around to help and listen to them – without at once giving them any advice. Go the stony path with them, bear with them in their grief, and bring them in prayer into the presence of God, who alone can give them true comfort. Try to feel with the person’s emotions and accept them as they are. Be aware that for that person nothing is as it was before, even if life goes on for everybody else. Such grief quickly creates a barrier between that person and their surroundings, which can become increasingly difficult to overcome.

If you feel all this is too much to bear on your own or do not speak the language of the grieving person well enough, look for help. On Deutschland-Begleiter.de you will find a list of Christian churches in your neighbourhood that offer refugees and migrants support.

May God be with you, may He meet you, and may He use you in other people’s lives!

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