Bible Reading: Romans 8:26-30
We know that God causes everything to work together for the good of those who love God and are called according to his purpose. Romans 8:28
Until a few months ago Ashley and Morgan didn’t even know their Grandpa Hoffman had ever been married to anyone but Grandma Hoffman. But now they have learned that when he was a young man of just twenty-five, his first wife was struck with a rare illness. He took care of her as she grew more and more sick; but after a year of caring for her, his young wife died.
The loneliness you feel when you lose someone you love is worse than having a whole herd of skunks scamper through your life. But Ashley and Morgan learned by talking to Grandpa Hoffman that his loss taught him many lessons.
Do you wonder how anything good can come from losing a friend or a family member you love?
Sure, you get to remind yourself that Jesus never leaves you. And you can practice walking close to him. But is there anything else to learn?
When you start to feel lonely, try hard to think about these three important things you can learn from loneliness:
Losses are a fact of life you have to deal with. Grandpa Hoffman knew all the wishing in the world couldn’t change the death of his wife. He knew he needed to learn to raise their son alone—at least for a while.
Grief is a normal feeling when you lose a family member or friend. You expect to grieve when someone dies. But grief is also natural when a special friend moves away or you fight with a friend. The trick is learning to grieve in a healthy way.
God has put Christians in your life to support you. Grandpa Hoffman was surprised that his biggest supporters were some new friends more than twice his age—older Christian men who had also lost their wives. Their solid friendships brought advice and help he could count on.
Sometimes grief will throw us into such a spin that we can’t think straight. We think warped things like God is punishing me! or I must be a bad person for this to happen to me! But God isn’t out to get you. He wants to teach you. If you let him, you’ll find out that God can cause good to come even from the worst situations. He wants to make you grow strong in him.
TALK: What are some of the relationship losses you have endured? Can you think of examples from your family history? What did people learn from those losses?
PRAY: God, help us to see the positive side of all of our losses.
ACT: There’s likely someone in your world who has suffered a loss lately. Make a plan as a family to help that person.