I’m one of those people who forget dates. I’d miss a major holiday if someone didn’t remind me it was near… and so I use an Internet program to remind me of important days. Only I put my anniversary there too, and so this morning I received an email…
Debbie, it is your fifth anniversary on Wednesday May 23rd…
As I walked to work, I thought, not just about my own sorrow, but that of others I know. A dear friend’s husband is in hospital, and she too is not well. Another friend lost her sister (and my best friend) only two months after Rich died. Another friend has struggled with desperate situations ever since coming to Israel—over 20 years ago.
I suppose you could sum up our feelings and grief with another word… Disappointment. And disappointment makes us afraid to hope again, because we don’t want to be disappointed again. In my disappointment, I’m reminded of Romans 5:1-5
Therefore, having been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom also we have obtained our introduction by faith into this grace in which we stand; and we exult in hope of the glory of God. And not only this, but we also exult in our tribulations, knowing that tribulation brings about perseverance; and perseverance, proven character; and proven character, hope; and hope does not disappoint, because the love of God has been poured out within our hearts through the Holy Spirit who was given to us.
Disappointment is a part of life. There will always be something we hoped for that is not fulfilled. Whether something small like a broken antique, or big, like more time with someone we love.
Times like this, I would be lying to say I no longer grieve. Walking through this grief, I find the grief is for far more than Rich. I grieve him, Israel, the US, family, parents, work, friends… Sometimes it’s overwhelming.
At times like this I, and all struggling with disappointment need to be reminded of where our real and solid hope is: In a loving God who is working in us and pointing us to a hope that does not disappoint because it is founded in Him and His character. With that hope as my anchor, I find the grace to stand.