Sunday, February 7, 2016

A Grief Observed

Five weeks ago today I walked in the door after a long meeting at church, heard the worst news of my life, and sobbed my heart out for what turned out to be almost two solid weeks.

Someone very close and very dear to TJ and me has lost his faith--is deep in the grip of pornography addiction--has walked away from his wife and children--and seems to me a only a shell of the man I've known and loved for years.  And the shock could not have been greater, because for all I knew he was fine.  I could not have been more grieved or saddened if he had suddenly died.

If he were to read this, I think he might take offense to that last bit.  But as heart-breaking as it would have been to lose him to death, in that case I would have the comfort of knowing he died in the Lord--I would feel that he still belonged to me in a way.  No such comfort has borne me up in the past five weeks.  He seems separated from me in a way that I never thought possible.

I have been holding off on this blog post because I wasn't sure what to say, and I'm still not.  But I am a compulsive truth-teller, an over-sharer.  And I feel a little bit hypocritical to post happy, smiling pictures here and not tell you the whole truth.  My heart is breaking.

My Savior is at work here, I am sure, saving my loved one.  I have faith that someday he will choose to come back to the warmth and light of the gospel, and I fervently hope that he will find healing from his addiction.  But in the meantime, I am surrounded by broken hearts.  We are all slogging through the grieving process.  Denial, anger, bargaining, depression, and acceptance are hats I seem to alternate between several times a day.  But the Savior is not only working to save our lost one.  He is also working on us.  He is purifying us, giving us more compassion, growing our faith in him.  And He is helping us to bear it.

My faith in God is stronger today than it was a month ago.  Every word of every talk, lesson, and song rings with truth, and I know that my merciful God is using this for my good. I would not have chosen this, not in a million years.  And I'm still not very grateful.  But God is good.  I can trust Him as we walks me through this wilderness--just as I have before--He has never steered me wrong before.