How can I find comfort when someone I care about dies?
Sometimes, life throws you a curve ball.
Last Sunday, I was asked to flip lessons and teach this Sunday (today), instead of next. I agreed to teach said lesson without asking what the assigned topic was.
Uh... hello. See the title of this post. THAT was the assigned topic.
Interesting, as I've been in a bizarre form of denial about Mark. (Some of it mourning, as in sadness, some of it is anger, and... I am sorry to say that I've just put a finger on this in the past week... some of it survivor's guilt. Which, really, I'm thinking is probably the root of some of the anger.)
Anyhoo, this lesson hit me like a freight train. And I had some SERIOUS grumpiness directed at The Powers That Be (aka: God) that THIS is the lesson that fell into my lap. So much so that I put off reading all the recommended conference talks until this morning, and that's when it hit me. ("It" being the freight train.)
Would you read this quote? Oh my goodness gracious, it's like Elder Nelson was speaking DIRECTLY TO ME, in a talk he gave over twenty years ago:
Irrespective of age, we mourn for those loved and lost. Mourning is one of the deepest expressions of pure love. It is a natural response in complete accord with divine commandment: “Thou shalt live together in love, insomuch that thou shalt weep for the loss of them that die.” (D&C 42:45.)
Moreover, we can’t fully appreciate joyful reunions later without tearful separations now. The only way to take sorrow out of death is to take love out of life.
Again, "the only way to take sorrow out of death is to take love out of life."
Insert my softening heart right here.
It's worth it. The grief and the sorrow when we lose someone we love? ... It's TOTALLY worth it. Because if we didn't love those people so much, they wouldn't leave a hole. But we do love them, so they do leave a hole. ... And since the cost of not missing them would be not loving them, the pain is worth it.
Am I still sad (and sometimes mad)? Yeah. Do I have a measure of guilt (that I know is irrational, because it's not like this is a choice I made, or a circumstance I created), because I am still here and Mark is gone? Also, yeah. ... But I have a heck of a lot more peace than I did even 24 hours ago, and for that, I am grateful.
You've got to know that I still cried through my entire lesson (I'm a weepy little thing), but I'm so grateful for the "opportunity" (I put that in quotes, because I fought this lesson good and hard) to teach this exact lesson - right now, when I needed it.
It's amazing to me, how the Lord creates circumstances to meet our needs. Simply amazing. Poetic, even. I love Him.