It’s been a week since my father-in-law passed away. I give thanks for the Body of Christ.
Our church, Church of the Apostles, has been present to aid, comfort, and pray. One of our priests was there with my father-in-law near the end to pray over him and with him. Then, he was there to preside over the funeral.
The day after the funeral, when some deep grief hit me, he was again present to listen, to counsel, to pray.
Our son’s church was present. The founding pastor of that church (City Hope in Daphne, AL) gave a message at the graveside that was full of hope. Many staff members from that church were there out of love for Joshua and his family. It was incredible to see their love and comfort.
I wanted to be in church this morning, so it was again the comfort of the Holy Spirit through the Body that lifted me up. Conversations with dear friends. A friend reaching out and asking if I wanted to go to breakfast, and then the conversation over a meal.
It is also the small, Spirit-led things. As the music team was setting up for sound, one of musicians/leaders was on a mic for soundcheck and began to sing a song called “Still” that I had heard from Hillsong years before. It was an anthem for our church in Minneapolis at the time because we were all feeling a loss in the church family. As the friend sang the song quietly for a soundcheck I was thrown back into that moment and my heart welled up in praise. (I thought we would sing that song in the service. Turns out he was just playing it for soundcheck. What a GIFT!)
In times of grief I need the Body of Christ. It is easy for me to withdraw. I actually DO withdraw, but when it comes to the Body of Christ, I find a way to move myself into that atmosphere because it is here I find comfort and rest and healing.