One of the ways I have described preaching and teaching following the loss of our son is that I am speaking with a new voice. I’m not sure I invented that phrase, I probably read it someplace. Speaking with a new voice means that I now see things I did not see before, and I am able to express those things from a totally new perspective. When I am talking to someone who is grieving a significant loss, I can usually hear them speaking in a voice to which they are unaccustomed.
This is evident in the hymns we sing at church. We might think some of them are just old stodgy songs. In some songs, however, when you read the expressions in each stanza you begin to realize this is a person speaking from the experience of loss. Recently while singing a song in church I suddenly became aware that this was not just someone who wrote a pretty poem that was set to music! This was born out of raw emotion and stinging truth.
Recently Jon Owen experienced the hard loss of his father. For many men this kind of loss precipitates an enormous angst in regard to identity, history, and even the future of our lives. Jon recently tweeted the following:
Tomorrow I teach my first Bible Study class since my dad’s death. Luke 24 talking about resurrection. PRAISE GOD. Good news!!
I know Jon thought that the resurrection was good news before his father’s passing. But now? It’s an entirely new story. If I were in Jon’s class, I would expect tears! He is going to be talking about an earth shaking subject as he sees it through a brand new lens!
I wonder if that is how shaky fearful Peter warming his hands by the fire became strong fearless Peter with fire on his head at Pentecost? He lost his dearest friend and regained faith observing resurrection power!
If you are grieving the loss of someone important to you, and the world looks so different, do not be afraid. You are able to see some things others cannot see. And you are now able to speak with a new voice, one that is vital. For just around the corner or down the pew or across the workspace is another hurting heart who thinks they are all alone.
God bless you Jon, and many others who are hurting yet faith-filled.
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