Jesus & His Goodbyes

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Your first reaction reading this may be “Oh no, are we talking about grief and loss… again!?”

Life has seasons, stages and phases. For there to be anything new, old things always have to end, and we have to let go of them. Goodbyes and Hellos are a normal part of our life. We may have even been more confronted with loss during these difficult 18 months of Corona.

Rick Warren said recently that we will be seeing a tsunami of grief because of the many losses people have been going through.

In our first Godspace event which took place after a long Corona related break last Saturday (28.8.2021) we invited people to write their own psalm of lament, to look at the losses, questions and unfiltered emotions and to write a prayer of “truth-telling”.

Many psalms are psalms of lament. We can see how the psalmist pours out his heart to God. Very often the psalm ends on a positive note, with a declaration of who God is for him. The psalmist reflects on God’s character and starts to worship God.

We also meditated on Psalm 116 during our retreat. This psalm has 3 time periods: the psalmist looks back to the past (vv1-5), he roots himself in the present (vv6-1) and then he looks to the future (vv12-19).

I realized once again the importance of dealing with the hurts and disappointments of the past. If I do not give this a priority, my present and therefore also my future can be affected in a negative way. It is difficult to relax and rest as it says in v 7 if undealt issues are present in my life. I may carry the hurts and disappointments into the future. Healing doesn’t mean the loss or hurt did not happen. It means that it no longer controls us.

I recently started to think more about Jesus’ life on this earth. I have been inspired by The Chosen, a TV drama based on the life of Jesus of Nazareth (you can watch it on YouTube or on the free “The Chosen TV” app).

He was truly human and had feelings of loss like we do. I never reflected on the many goodbyes Jesus went through during his life. He felt the emptiness that comes with deep loss. He also had to learn to let go. This is such a huge comfort for us.

Jesus had to say goodbye to almost 30 years of security. He had to say goodbye to his friends, his family, his work, his favorite places in his home town.

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