I know you want to go forward and not backward. You want to become better, not bitter. You want to rebound, not rebel. Then allow me to present you with seven simple keys for the kind of mourning that leads to joy, dancing, and increase.
1. Set a time limit for your mourning.
You have heard the expression “Time heals all wounds.” Don’t believe it. Time doesn’t heal anything. Five years after my dad died, I still was not healed from that trauma that took place back in 1966. Waiting around for time to heal your pain is fruitless. Jesus is the healer.
I read about a precious man who received a nightmarish call one night that his entire family was killed in a school bus that was hit by a drunk driver. His wife of 18 years and his two beautiful teen-age daughters were gone. Time did not heal his pain as he rehearsed in his mind how his loved ones burned to death in that fiery crash. He could find no real peace or relief from the pain until he made the decision to set a time limit on his mourning. He set a date for it to be over, after which he would refuse to mourn. When he did this, God worked a miracle in his heart and restored his passion, gave him another beautiful wife and a new start in life. You must set a time limit on mourning if it is to turn to joy and dancing.
2. Pray in the Spirit.
Proverbs 3:5 tells us to “lean not unto our own understanding.” Often when the spirit of grief strikes, you’ll hear people say, “I just don’t understand . . ..” But when we pray in the spirit, we pray without our human understanding (1 Corinthians 14:2, 14,15). During these seasons of prayer, God just may reveal wonderful things to you about your loved one. He may show you important keys and principles to apply in your life. Your own spirit will be energized, built up (1 Corinthians 14:4, Jude 20), and you will gain heavenly understanding.
3. Ask the Lord to give your loved one a message.
Necromancy is forbidden in the Bible. This is the practice of talking to the dead. Prayer to God, however, is not forbidden, but encouraged. I remember standing at my father’s gravestone fourteen years after he had died. It was the first time I ever visited his grave. I stood there weeping, thinking of all the things I wished I had said to my dad when he was alive.
Then I remembered looking up into the heavens and saying, “Jesus, You are God. Will you please tell my dad that I love him — I really love him? And let him know that I’m a preacher now, if he doesn’t already know. Tell him he’d be proud of me, like he was when I’d win the track meets back in high school. Thank you, Lord.” What a peace enveloped me. What an amazing release. Something happened that closed the book on all those guilt-ridden years of never telling my dad that I loved him.
4. Start praising God with reckless abandon.
Lift your hands. Dance around your house shouting praises to God and watch how the garment of praise peels off that old rag of heaviness.
… to comfort all that mourn; to appoint unto them that mourn in Zion, to give unto them beauty for ashes, the oil of joy for mourning, the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness; that they might be called trees of righteousness, the planting of the Lord, that He might be glorified
5. Speak out loud to others of your intention to move ahead in God’s will, regardless of this setback.
You see, the devil can make some pretty powerful arguments for your right to grieve. He will accuse you, tell you all the wrong things you said or did, and use any other tool he can employ to get you into a position of perpetual grief. Only faith-filled words spoken from God’s revealed will can neutralize him and drive his thoughts far from your mind. Jesus used simple phrases from God’s Word to overcome the devil. Speak God’s Word, God’s will, and your intentions of moving ahead.
6. Get busy again.
Do whatever it is you are called to do. It’s okay to take a short break, but there comes a time to get up and move on.
When Elijah started grieving because revival had not come to Israel and Jezebel wanted his head on a platter, he ran away, stopped under a juniper tree and just stayed there. But there came a time when God sent him the clear message, “It’s time to move on now. You’re a prophet, it’s time to start prophesying again.”
Start moving ahead, and verbalize to as many people as possible your full intentions of serving God all the days of your life, no matter what. It will not only help bring you into a “wealthy place,” (Psalm 66:12) it will be a witness to others of your abiding faith in Jesus Christ. Those who allow their lives to stop because of the spirit of grief can never be a witness of Christ’s amazing love and restoring power.
7: Give Jesus Christ your life, if you haven’t already.
Only He has the power to make all things new. God gave only one plan to make you fit for Heaven, and that plan is a Man – Jesus Christ. It was He who took our infirmities and bore our sicknesses. He bore our griefs and sorrows, and He alone has the power to pull you through the “Valley of Tears” successfully. God has no “Plan B.”
Jesus was God incarnate. He died on the cross and rose from the dead. It is Jesus who sent the Holy Spirit, the Divine Comforter. If you’ve never received Jesus Christ, do it right now.
But as many as received him, to them gave he the power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name.
Simply tell God, wherever you are right now, that you have sinned and fallen short of His standards.
For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God.
Ask Jesus to be your Savior and only hope. Then say, “Jesus, You are my Lord.” Tell someone you prayed and that Jesus Christ is now your Lord, and that you have been given a brand new start in life.
2 Corinthians 5:17
Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things become new.
This is the starting point for turning mourning into joy and dancing. God is crazy in love with you. If you haven’t done it already, accept His love as a free gift.
John 3:16, 17
For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved.
When you receive Jesus Christ, you can then ask Him to send you the Divine Comforter; the Holy Spirit. Then your mourning will turn to overflowing joy. Look what Jesus said about this:
John 14:16, 17a
And I will pray the Father, and he shall give you Another Comforter, that he may abide with you for ever; even the Spirit of Truth …
Let’s pray this prayer, and I know God will hear and forgive you. He’ll give you a new nature, and prepare a home in heaven for you.
Father in Heaven,
I come to you in the Name of Your Son, Jesus. I have sinned against you. Please forgive me and cleanse me. I believe Jesus died on the cross for me, and I believe He was raised from the dead and lives forevermore. Jesus, come into my heart and life. Be my Savior, my Lord, and my best friend. I trust you to give me a home in Heaven and a brand new start in life beginning now. Amen!
THE CHOICE IS YOURS
Rebel or rebound? The choice belongs to each of us. We can go forward with our lives or we can go backwards. I know you are choosing to rebound. Just wait. You will see a bright, abundant future begin to unfold before your very eyes. Watch for it, beginning RIGHT NOW!