Grief + Healing

My dear aunt passed away a few months ago. I did not attend her funeral, but the Lord knows, as does she, I was present when it mattered.

Since then, I’ve been grieving. More importantly, I’ve been honest with God about my grief and have trusted Him with it’s appropriation. I’ve had days of super strength, days of stoic numbness, a few sudden with tears, and some with spurts of laughter. Today was laughter and tears. All days, gratefully, I’ve had peace.

Just this morning I met a lady that looked like my aunt did in her younger years. Man, it was so good to see her. She was listening to an audio book (something my aunt would be doing) and she had a lot of bags, and a lot of things in those bags (something like my aunt) lol. I chuckled to myself, teared up, and thanked God for the spurt of laughter. This is grief…coupled with healing.

I think it’s so important for us to not just stay stuck with our grief, but to also marry it with healing found purely in God, The Father. We can move past it properly this way. Do you know that it’s okay to move past it? Have you granted yourself permission?

For everything there is a season, a time for every activity under heaven…a time to cry and a time to dance. – Ecclesiastes 3:1-4

Now if it’s your season to cry buckets, I get it. By all means cry on without remorse! But if you know deep down in your heart, that you should have been dancing a long time ago, this is your opportunity to cast your care for real, for real…or again any way. Guilt is NOT from God. Never feel guilty for God’s favor. Feel GRATEFUL!

1 Peter 5:7 says: “Give all your worries and cares to God, for He cares for you.” Do you believe that?! So that means, yes, even though He allowed your loss to occur, God cares for YOU!! Is scripture going to be your foundation or are you going to believe a lie? The choice is yours.

Let’s not just carry this weight of grief. Let’s feel it in all of it’s gory, sometimes seemingly unreasonable pain and injustice. Ugh. Let’s release it unto God and release each other to process it in ways unique to ourselves.

Let’s give the devil a black eye and an eviction notice, telling him HE CAN’T RUIN OUR LIVES by causing us to tighten our grip in seasons we should be loosening it.

Let’s also pray for appropriation in our grief, so that it is not displaced; turning into bitterness, addiction, and who knows what else. Let’s not let it begin squatting on our hearts; extending past it’s seasonal expiration.

God wants you joyous! That’s one of the fruits of His spirit! And I would personally hate to see you skip past your happy season, because you’re holding on too long to the sad one. You know what I mean? I know you do.

Well, that’s all I really wanted to say. I don’t have a fancy punny ending or anything like that for this post. Oh! I did see an Instagram post be another person who was grieving. They suggested writing a letter to a loved one and releasing it in a balloon. I thought that was a pretty neat idea, and I think that will help me in my process. God-willing, we’ll do it, as writing was something special my aunt and I shared together. A letter seems swell.

In the meantime, pray for me while I pray for you. Enjoy this short clip of my aunt (Author and Speaker, Andrea Grayson) sharing her testimony at a Women’s Conference in San Diego a couple of years ago. Love her and you so much.

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There is something about nighttime. #GoodMourning #Poetry #Grief #Sorrow

I’ve smiled every day since I remembered you were here
But then long after sunset
my eyes shed a tear

There is something about nighttime.

I’ve laughed many moments before the high tide of darkness arrived until, “Bam!”, the news…

was prescribed
I sighed
before I cried
and denied
then realized that…

There is something about nighttime.

I thought you were just dancing to the beat of a hip, fast song
But all this time, the lights were dim,
And I was totally wrong.

Man.

When I prayed for your fire
And I prayed for your faith,
I had no idea how much was at stake
Believe me when I say, I knew
not at all that…
ashes would await.

Gosh.

Lord, you said that joy cometh in the morning but for all of us, I am requesting an exception for tonight. Because…

There is something about nighttime.

©2013 • Chan’tel Nikole Grayson

No worries, I’m fine. #Praise #Worship

“But thou art holy, O thou that inhabitest the praises of Israel.” – Psalm 22:3

I’m on my lunch break and I’m really full.  Not full of food though (Although it sure was bomb!).  I’m full of Christ.  His love overwhelms me — all parts of Him and who He is.  Oh, my beloved, how grateful I am that you are mine, and I yours!  We praise You on today for your goodness, mercy, and unfailing love!

Like I said, I’m on my lunch break.  I’m in tears and my make-up is officially jacked.  No worries, I’m fine.  As usual, I’ve been basking in the presence of the Lord, chatting it up with King Jesus and loving me some Him.  I’m really full.  Now I can let it out like I want to.  As I awakened this morning, I invited the Lord into my room with song.  I sang, “You Are Good” in my crusty, not-so-Kari Jobe-like morning voice.  (I overuse that word ‘crusty’ by the way) The Lord loved it too.  I love that He loves me.  He saw beyond the voice and zoomed into the thought, the effort, the motive, the heart.  That’s what counts.  I began with this part of the song…

Everyday I’ll awaken my praise and pour out a song from my heart

You are good, You are good, You are good and your mercy is forever

I absolutely love praising God.  It comes easy and gives me great joy to do so.  But I do understand that what comes easy to some doesn’t come as easy for others.  I also understand that practice and desire to overcome – the decision to overcome, has power.  At times when I’m worshiping with the music ministry, I’m amazed at how some can just sit or stand (at least they’re standing) and watch you praise the Lord.  No participation.

 Your breakthrough is never contingent on the praise of someone else, and God’s habitat is only as large as you build it. 

Big praise, produces a big environment, making room for a big God.  That’s what we want.  Kick rocks Satan!  If you’re not used to opening your mouth and praising God, that’s okay.  But I can assure you that the enemy would love for you to never get used to it.  There’s power in your praise; power in words period.  Praise tears down walls, kills giants, and socks the devil in throat.  You don’t have to start with a song like I did this morning.  You can start with a “Thank You Lord”, an “I love you Jesus”, a “You are worthy God”.  Better yet, start with the highest praise – Hallelujah!  You can start now.  Trust me, like you and I, He loves to be wooed and will express His gratitude.

I can’t speak for the praise of anyone else, but this is a little about mine.  (Not really sure why I’m sharing it, but let’s roll with it).

My heart often speaks to the Lord in tears. My most deepest and heartfelt prayers for you, others, and myself are in the form of tears. Whatever it is that I’m praying and seeking God for, I want it so deeply, so badly, that it moves me to tears.  Each drop, a petition.  Then at other times, my most deepest and heartfelt thanks and gratitude unto God for all He has ever done and is forever doing presently and in advance is also in the form of tears.  I have huge faith and I truly believe that every petition that I’ve launched into the heavens in Jesus’ name, I do have. I see it in the spirit realm and hold onto His promises.  No take-backs, just miracles.  I’m speechless and in awe, and I cry.  Each drop, a thank you for [insert petition here].  This sometimes turns into a shout or jump (and a crazy ‘Oh my gosh is she okay?’ look to be actually asked later smh).  Shout out to the Holy Spirit for that one.  I’m not complaining.  I’m not embarrassed.  It’s all good with me, because my God is all good to me.  This had to be where the phrase “Oh My Goodness” came from lol.

At church I love sitting at the end of the row (doesn’t happen all the time, but I do). I like it because I can scoot over near or into the aisle and not allow for my praise to be hindered in any way.  Arms out as far as I can stretch them? yes, please (that’s what they’re for).

So the next time you see me praising the Lord, don’t trip.  I’m just  a worshiper washing my Savior’s feet with my tears.  The oil in my alabaster box is costly, my friend.  No worries, I’m fine.