It intrigues me why some people grow bitter and some grow sweeter while facing a personal tragedy. What makes the difference?
I Samuel 29 records the story of when David and his men return to their city of Ziglag and discover it has been destroyed and all their women and children taken into captivity.
Understandably, David was greatly distressed, and he wept “till there was no more strength in him.” BUT “David encouraged and strengthened himself in the Lord His God.” And then he sought the Lord through Abiathar the priest and asked the Lord for direction.
The response of David’s men is in stark contrast. They experienced the same bitter grief, but they turned on David and wanted to stone him.
It reminds of when the children of Israel blamed Moses for their plight in the wilderness.
It reminds me of Americans who blame their President when they lose a son in war.
It reminds me of MKs (missionary kids) who blame their Mission for their boarding school experience.
In our grief, we tend to make illogical accusations and decisions. It’s much easier to blame others instead of taking responsibility for our own emotions and choices. Blame is a way to discharge pain. It wasn’t David’s fault for what happened to his followers’ wives. It wasn’t the President who shot the bullet. It wasn’t the Mission that cruelly punished the child.
Grief brings out what’s already in our hearts. Who are you blaming for your pain?
I like your probing question about “who my blaming for my grief?” It reminds me of an elderly woman in the nursing home where I worked in my nursing student days – confined to her chair in her room—-– many staff stopped by, talked with her. I’m thinking (most likely) she became in her elderly years more of what she was earlier. She drew people to her. It seems to me that what we are now, how were choosing to live, is what we will be in the future.
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