Welcome to Episode #56 of Preparing for the Inevitable – A Podcast on How to Handle Trouble, Suffering, Pain, and Death.
I am your host, Daniel Whyte III, president of Gospel Light Society International. This podcast will help you get ready to face the inevitable unpleasant things that will happen in your life — things like trouble, suffering, sickness, and death — the death of people you love and your own death. Trouble, suffering, and death are common threads that run throughout all of humanity. They are inescapable. You will never meet a person who has not, is not, or will not experience these terrible things in life. Yet, we attempt to hide from these inevitabilities, to pretend they don’t exist or that they won’t happen to us. Our world is filled with news of people dying, children suffering, entire government systems and organizations enduring trouble and turmoil, but we tend to see these as things that only happen to “other people” and never to us. Trouble, suffering, and death come equally to all people, of all races, from every socio-economic status, of every religion, in every country of the world. It makes us all equal. This podcast will show you how to accept these realities of life, and not just cope, but face trouble, suffering, and death in your own life and in the world with confidence, courage, class, and most of all, with faith, hope, and charity.
The Bible says in 2 Corinthians 1:3-4: “Blessed be God, even the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies, and the God of all comfort; Who comforteth us in all our tribulation, that we may be able to comfort them which are in any trouble, by the comfort wherewith we ourselves are comforted of God.”
The featured quote for this episode is from Henry Wordsworth. He said, “There is no grief like the grief that does not speak.”
Our topic for today is titled “Grief and Mourning, Part 8: Can We Do That?” from the book, “The Art of Dying: Living Fully into the Life to Come” by Rob Moll.
Lauren Winner, an author and professor at Duke Divinity School, discovered modern churches’ stark absence of mourning rituals after converting from Judaism to Christianity. In her book Mudhouse Sabbath, Winner writes of missing the mourning rituals of her Jewish faith. “The chapter on grief,” says Winner, “is the chapter by far that people respond to the most. It’s the chapter I still get mail from people saying, ‘How can Christians do this kind of communal bereavement process?'”
In the nineteenth century, says Winner, Christians also practiced mourning in a similarly intentional way. Among other things, the Victorians and Americans of the era wore mourning clothes and jewelry. These Victorian traditions expressed the view that what a person wore signaled something beyond a person’s fashion sense. “When I dress in mourning,” Winner says, “I’m both telling myself I’m bereaved, and I’m also making it communal.” Mourning clothes provide a signal that placed the burden on those who were not grieving. “It really is the opposite of the modern stance in which a bereaved person is praised for getting back to work in a week,” she says. In response the community is signaled to reach out in comfort and concern.
Mourners need to be able to communicate to the community that they are in need of special consideration. And the community needs to be willing to receive those signals. Rather than reinstituting mourning dress codes, churches could provide these signals in other ways. In the church bulletin, rather than simply listing mourners in need of prayer during the week of or following a death, churches could keep their names printed for a full year. The church could mark the anniversary of a death during a service or by offering coffee and donuts on a Sunday in honor of the deceased. A church team might be designated to provide one meal a month during the year following a death. The meal wouldn’t be provided because one can’t cook while grieving, but simply because the church needs an excuse to get together and show their concern.
Mourning rituals need not be elaborate or expensive. The goal is not necessarily to produce a display in someone’s honor but to simply provide everyone in the community the opportunity to recognize a loss. Cards, meals, and public announcements are ways of saying that an important member of our community is suffering and in need of our care.
If the Lord tarries His Coming and we live, we will continue looking at “Grief and Mourning” in our next podcast.
Let’s Pray —
Dear friend, please understand that after you die, you will be ushered into one of two places to spend eternity, Heaven or Hell. Here’s how you can be sure that you will not go to hell and suffer eternal damnation forever and rather have a home in Heaven when you die. The Bible says, ”Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ and thou shalt be saved.” Here’s how you can be saved from sin and hell and have a home in Heaven when you die in more detail.
1. Accept the fact that you are a sinner, and that you have broken God’s law. The Bible says in Ecclesiastes 7:20: “For there is not a just man upon earth that doeth good, and sinneth not.” Romans 3:23 reads: “For all have sinned and come short of the glory of God.” In fact, I am the chief of sinners, so don’t think that you’re alone.
2. Accept the fact that there is a penalty for sin. The Bible states in Romans 6:23: “For the wages of sin is death…”
3. Accept the fact that you are on the road to hell. Jesus Christ said in Matthew 10:28: “And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.” The Bible says in Revelation 21:8: “But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death.”
4. Accept the fact that you cannot do anything to save yourself! The Bible states in Ephesians 2: 8, 9: “For by grace are ye saved through faith: and that not of yourselves: it is a gift of God. Not of works, lest any man should boast.”
5. Accept the fact that God loves you more than you love yourself, and that He wants to save you from hell. Jesus Christ said in John 3:16, “For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life.”
6. With these facts in mind, please repent of your sins, believe on the Lord Jesus Christ and pray and ask Him to come into your heart and save you this very moment. The Bible states in the book of Romans 10:9, 13: “That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised Him from the dead, thou shalt be saved.”
“For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.”
Dear friend, if you are willing to believe on the Lord Jesus Christ for salvation, please pray with me this simple prayer: Heavenly Father, I realize that I am a sinner and that I have done some bad things in my life. For Jesus Christ sake, please forgive me of my sins. I now believe with all of my heart that Jesus Christ died for me, was buried, and rose again. Lord Jesus, please come into my heart and save my soul and change my life today. Amen.
If you believed in your heart that Jesus Christ died on the cross, was buried, and rose again, allow me to say, congratulations on doing the most important thing in life and that is accepting Jesus Christ as your Lord and Saviour! For more information to help you grow in your newfound faith in Christ, go to Gospel Light Society.com and read “What To Do After You Enter Through the Door”. Jesus Christ said in John 10:9, “I am the door: by me if any man enter in, he shall be saved, and shall go in and out, and find pasture.”