God is Our Refuge in the Darkness of Life

Psalm 16: 1-2:  Protect me, O God, for in you I take refuge.  I say to the Lord, “You are my Lord; I have no good apart from you.”

Grief draws us into the shadows.  During the Advent season, a time of waiting, I am reminded of the tremendous grief I experienced following the death of my husband of thirty one years. The hymn, “Lost in the Night,” describes my grief experience.  For two years, I was dwelling in darkness and lost in the night.  I learned during this time what praying without ceasing was.  I took refuge in God and asked God to do for me what I could not do myself.  After waiting for two years for the grief to leave, I realized that the grief would never leave.  It would remain a part of me, but God had protected me during the darkness of grief and led me to the light of life which is Jesus Christ.  Now, by the power of the Holy Spirit, I can comfort others in their grief. 

Many people experience grief during the Christmas season.  Let us all help and encourage one another to trust the promises of God.  Sometimes, we need to wait, but at this time and in this place in our society, people don’t like to wait, but Advent reminds us that Jesus is so worth waiting for.  Jesus came for all people to redeem us and to save us as stated in the final stanza of “Lost in the Night:”

                                          Light o’re the land of the needy is beaming;

                                          Rivers of life through its deserts are streaming,

                                          Bringing all peoples a Savior redeeming.

                                          Come and save us soon.  Come and save us soon.

Prayer:  Lord, we thank you for being with us in the shadows and valleys of our lives.  Empower us by the Holy Spirit to see and to serve our neighbors in need.  In Jesus name we pray.  Amen.

1. Do you know of someone who is grieving?  Please consider how you can support those who grieve.

2. Where do you see God working in your life?

Susan Juilfs, Trinity Lutheran Church, Akron, Iowa

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