COMMENTARY 979.1: Surviving Grief and Tragedy — The Spark Within

Here’s the bad news:

Virtue isn’t a golden ticket to a pain-free life. Bad things happen to good people as often as they happen to bad people.

It seems unfair, but in the natural order of the world, suffering is random. To expect otherwise is to sentence oneself to despondency, disillusionment, bitterness, and anger.

Here’s the good news:

The magic power that comes with our humanity isn’t a shield protecting us from misfortune but an inner strength that helps us deal with it, overcome it, and learn from it so we can still find love, laughter, and joy despite it.

At our darkest moments, we can’t see and often don’t believe there is light at the end of the tunnel. Sometimes we think the tunnel is our life. This is when we need to have faith in our inner strength and summon the moral courage to find the spark within that, with just a

puff of hope, will become a flame bright enough to show us the way out.

But what can we do if despair is feeding on the soul of someone we love?

We can’t carry their burdens or make their pain or grief go away, but we can be a friend so they don’t suffer or grieve alone.

Simply by being there – with a shared tear, a kind hug, or an outstretched hand – we can be a living answer to despair’s dark question: “How can I go on?”

In the midst of despair, being reminded that tomorrow is another day provides no comfort because it’s hard to believe tomorrow will be any better. But it will be. Tomorrow is the doorway to the future, and that’s where we’ll live the rest of our lives.

This is Michael Josephson reminding you that character counts.

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Comments 4

  1. “We can’t carry their burdens or make their pain or grief go away, but we can be a friend so they don’t suffer or grieve alone.” As a bereaved parent, I would say all bereaved parents would agree with this. You can’t take my pain away, but there are some things you CAN do. Most importantly, don’t disappear. You don’t have to do or say the perfect thing, just be there for the long haul.

  2. I must disagree with you Michael, as that wonderful “magic power” you eloquently describe as being an inner strength that allows us to carry on is only partially descriptive. Our inner strength must ALSO connect with a godliness or great spirit or some outside universal power that exists in our worldly universe. The actual “life force” that my Holy Spirit (as I understand this miraculous phenomena) gives to me really every day is simply an amazing, glorious, gift to me and my loved ones on a regular, daily basis.

    Grieving and HEALING from the loss of dearly departed (hopefully to our Lord’s heaven) has been many times a mysterious experience for me. Now at 61 years young, I think my grief settles into a warm, safe place that allows me to carry on. I love your “doorway metaphor” that opens to the next day’s future activity. Our future absolutely offers HOPE and POSIVITIVE building of skills, connections, physical objects that nurture us, and MORE !!! :):):)

    Thank you Michael and our C.C. community to bring this vital subject to this blog space. Even “Divorce” has lots of “living grieving” that must be healthily processed and moved into a good place for our children. That continues to be a challenge for our family; but God willing, will become a more loving and glorifying state of life for the grandchildren. Certainly better than expulsion and death; that is unquestionably certain !!! :):):) Whew, THANK GOD !!

  3. >>> What Will Matter 04/06/15 5:38 AM >>>
    What Will Matter

    COMMENTARY 926.2: Surviving Grief and Tragedy — The Spark Within http://media.blubrry.com/whatwillmatter/p/whatwillmatter.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/03/CC-032213Finding-the-Spark-Within.mp3

    Here’s the bad news: Virtue isn’t a golden ticket to a pain-free life. Bad things happen to good people as often as they happen to bad people.
    It seems unfair, but in the natural order of the world, suffering is random. To expect otherwise is to sentence oneself to despondency, disillusionment, bitterness, and anger.
    Here’s the good news: The magic power that comes with our humanity isn’t a shield protecting us from misfortune but an inner strength that helps us deal with it, overcome it, and learn from it so we can still find love, laughter, and joy despite it.
    At our darkest moments, we can’t see and often don’t believe there is light at the end of the tunnel. Sometimes we think the tunnel is our life. This is when we need to have faith in our inner strength and summon the moral courage to find the spark within that, with just a puff of hope, will become a flame bright enough to show us the way out.
    But what can we do if despair is feeding on the soul of someone we love?
    We can’t carry their burdens or make their pain or grief go away, but we can be a friend so they don’t suffer or grieve alone.
    Simply by being there – with a shared tear, a kind hug, or an outstretched hand – we can be a living answer to despair’s dark question: “How can I go on?” In the midst of despair, being reminded that tomorrow is another day provides no comfort because it’s hard to believe tomorrow will be any better. But it will be. Tomorrow is the doorway to the future, and that’s where we’ll live the rest of our lives.
    This is Michael Josephson reminding you that character counts.

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