I do not grieve as one who has no hope... but I do still grieve.
My heart is heavy today. Heavy for my dear friends whose baby girl was stillborn. Heavy for another friend who is facing scary brain surgery. Heavy for friends who long for something they have not yet been given. Heavy for myself as I continue to be told, "Wait."
At times like this, it is comforting to me that the Bible does not tell us not to grieve. How could we not, when things like this happen? But the Bible does remind us that we do not grieve as one who has no hope. Our grief looks different from the grief of this world. And it is possible to be burdened with grief without having it consume us.
What makes the difference?
My friends who's daughter was stillborn know this. They named their precious baby Madelyn Hope. Because even in the overwhelming sadness that they currently find themselves in, hope remains.
Many years ago, long before his own precious daughter died, Christian artist Steven Curtis Chapman wrote a song called With Hope. The chorus of that song has a message for us all:
We can cry with hope
We can say goodbye with hope
'Cause we know our goodbye is not the end, oh no
And we can grieve with hope
'Cause we believe with hope
(There's a place by God's grace)
There's a place where we'll see your face again
We wait with hope
And we ache with hope
We hold on with hope
We let go with hope
In the midst of this grief, I'm holding on to hope.
It may be all I've got... but it's enough.