DEATH OF A LOVED ONE / PRAYER OPTIONS
Like the clean slash of a keen-edged knife,
The tender touch of bruise
That throbs beneath the skin—
Yet does not surface
And for the hiding
Hurts the more.
Like the sting of unshed tears that struggle for the easing comfort of
It takes so little—
The flashing vision of a face
And my face responds
With aching jaws that clench to hold back
That calls to mind some word that was so much a part of
And my throat aches with cries that want to call your name,
Only to know—
That calling cannot bring you back.
How long does loving hurt?
And when does aching cease?
As long as memory can recall
And say with love
I knew you well—
Cannot quell the
Nor ease the
But only grasp that having loved,
My heart can bear the
O God, I grieve, I ache, and yet I am numb. I feel the sadness of loss—never to be with ______again on this earth, never to laugh with him/her again, to hear that voice which was so familiar that I sometimes took for granted.
I feel the ache of longing. I, too, want to see your face, to be with you in your embrace. And yet, not yet.
And how do I go beyond numb, the grief and yet not feeling anything? I feel the loneliness, emptiness, loss. I am numb and exhausted from all of this. I have no resources for grief, at least, not on my own.
So, with the psalmist, I lift up my eyes to you. I need and depend on you, my God. You are the One who holds _______ in your embrace and you are the One who holds me. Hold me together to your glory. Amen.
That bursts and flames,
With each living breath that newness takes
By a pain that also lives
With a motion close akin to joy…
Like a bruise that hurts to touch,
By a tightness that cannot find release outside of life.
Then comes a voice—
Whose knowing depth unleashes frozen tears,
Whose touch spells
That parting cannot sever,
Whose hand leads
To a sense of peace,
Whose being is the
And the presence
Of a gentle God.