Sadness erupts after the last headlights disappear around the corner

By: Dr. Jacquelyn Simmons Scripture: Grace be to you and peace from God our father, and from the Lord Jesus Christ. Blessed be God, even the father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the father of mercies, and the God of all comfort. Who comforted us in all our tribulation that we may be able to comfort them which are in any trouble, by the comfort wherewith we ourselves are comforted by God. For as the sufferings of Christ abound in us, so our consolation also abounded by Christ. And whether we be affiliated, it is for your consolation and salvation, which is effectual in the enduring of the same sufferings which we also suffer: or whether we be comforted, it is for your consolation and salvation. And our hope of you is stead fast, knowing, so shall ye be also of the consolation (2 Corinthians 1:2-7). My friends, very few of us have not experienced the ravages of pain due to the death of a loved one. In fact, my baby brother, “Ronnie”, was funeralized this past Saturday, June 10, 2017. It was quite a devastating loss for our family. Sometime God gives us time to try and prepare for the deaths of our loved ones, and other times, we have to cope with the loss very quickly. In our case, it was within the span of almost three weeks. Our hopes went up and down finally were dashed as he “stepped into eternity”. As with other mourners, distant family members, neighbors, friends, church members and a few acquaintances are very stalwart with their support and it increases after the death actually takes place. The homes of the mourners are often flooded with foods, sympathy cards, telephone calls, etc., and in most cases, a huge food spread, called a repast, are served after graveside rights are performed. The repast is usually prepared and served by friends and church members. The pastor often delegates a program committee to assist in preparing the funeral program. It sometimes aids in its performance also. Some relatives and friends depart immediately after the funeral and burial rights are completed, while others linger awhile longer in order to make sure that the family members are adjusting adequately to the loss of their beloved one. And then the inevitable takes place. Reality sets in, especially when the phone becomes silent; the post-person does not deliver anymore sympathy cards, sympathetic hovering ceases, etc. Everyone who paused to help the mourners cope with their loss has to leave and take up their lives again. It’s very difficult for mourners to gaze out of their windows and note the last car lights disappearing around the corner. Some people will be seen in the future, others will never be seen again. In our text for this message, the Apostle Paul encourage mourners to use their experiences during the devastating loss of their loved one (s) to comfort other mourners. What a blessing!!!