Thoughts On Bereavement

Our God is merciful and tender.
He will cause the bright dawn of salvation to rise on us
and to shine from heaven
on all those who sit in the dark shadow of death,
to guide our steps into the path of peace. 

Luke 1v78,79

When someone dies, even though death has no power over us, it casts its shadow over us, and for a while we sit in that shadow, not able to avoid the reality of death coming into our experience.

Our God is merciful and tender – what He feels in our situation is compassion for us. Whatever else is going on, this is his over-riding emotion in the presence of our bereavement.

The bright dawn of salvation – Salvation is bright! God is committed to a bright dawn bringing in a bright day.

He will cause – We can’t make it happen – we can’t make the sun rise – we can’t shift the shadow.

He will cause – also means that no one else can stop it happening. There is an inevitability about the results of God’s tender mercy towards us.

On us – not just a vaguely possible experience in the world – but a personal dawn experience – which means not just that there is a sunrise – but that we see it ourselves.

To shine from heaven – if the shining was just on the human level, it would be behind the wall or stone of death that casts its shadow over us. But like the sun rising in the sky, the shining from heaven means that the light comes over the top of the wall and begins to shine nearer and nearer to where we are sitting until at last the shadow will have gone.

As the sun rises, even while we still sit in the shadows, we begin to see more clearly into the distance as the sun begins to light up the landscape.

A path appears – a path of peace for us to walk in. When it comes into view, it is time to get up from where we have been sitting and step into the new day’s sunshine and begin to walk again.

The time will come when we will look behind and still see that which cast the shadow, but the shadow will be gone.

He will guide our steps. – because he will be with us – that’s why there is peace on his path.

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