Hope Harbour

WELCOME TO HOPE HARBOUR

Every Third Thursday of the Month 7-9pm
Scottlea Gospel Chapel

Every month we take a topic and look at the spiritual, psychological, emotional and physical aspects of it and finish with looking at what the Bible says.  Those who attend are welcome to share their experiences related to the topic whether it be something they experience personally or a loved one is carrying.  All discussion is kept confidential and prayer is key.  The goal is to provide a safe place to share, learn and be heard with God being centre.
For the month of February, we talked about GRIEF.
Some thoughts discussed were:
Grief has many layers to it and occurs when someone has lost something that has significant meaning. This could include the passing on of a loved one, a relationship or a job layoff. Other losses could be a childhood to abuse, losing meaning and purpose in one’s life, physical abilities or even one’s hopes and dreams. We feel loss in many ways.
Spiritually, when we grieve, we sometimes ask God “WHY ME?” “WHY NOW?”.  It’s confusing and sometimes we feel like our foundation is shaken and it’s so easy to lash out at God because it hurts so much.  We grow up thinking if God is a God of love, why did he allow this to happen?  It challenges our beliefs.  For some, the pain experienced is so intense, it feels like you are going through a furnace, and when God doesn’t make the pain go away we wonder if He is really there.  God is there.  He’s standing right next to you.  Sometimes, when we try to find solutions, we get so confused, and when we stop striving He becomes more clear, and that journey through the pain is shared with God.
Psychology looks at the function of the emotion of sadness that happens when we grieve. There are stages of grief that one goes through and you can find 5, 7 or 10 stages of grief on line and all indicate a person experiences far more emotions than sadness.  The 7 stages model states that we experience; shock & denial, pain & guilt, anger & bargaining, “depression” reflection & loneliness.  Stage 5 is “the upward turn”, Stage 6 is reconstruction & working through, and Stage 7 is acceptance & hope.
Whatever emotion you are experiencing, it is God breathed.  Allow yourself to experience it. Cry if you need to.  Talk to someone if that helps.  However, if you start feeling like your emotion is consuming you, and all you want to do is hide, don’t!  Do the opposite of your urges and be with people.  By doing the opposite, it helps to keep your emotion at a healthy level and ultimately, more manageable.  If you find that the sadness is becoming consistently too dark, you might be experiencing not just a situational depression, but you might be developing a clinical depression.  If you are having a few of these symptoms, talk to your family doctor:  increased or decreased sleep, increased or decreased appetite, no motivation, no energy, feelings of guilt, thoughts that you would just rather be with your loved one and or just not be around anymore, and things you once enjoyed, just don’t matter anymore.
People experience grieving physically in many ways.  The important things to remember are to get adequate sleep, eat nutritious food everyday, and get exercise.  When people don’t allow themselves to experience grief, this is when they find that physical illnesses can begin to develop.
What does the Bible say?  We talked about a couple of key points.  Jesus knew sorrow, He felt it physically, emotionally and spiritually.  He knew what it felt like, He cried.  Imagine, the only perfect human being surrounded by creation that rejected Him and His love.  He also left His Father’s side in glory and when He died, His father
turned his face from him!  Totally abandoned and alone!  God knows our hurt. In Revelation 21 it talks about He will wipe away every tear. In Psalm 34 it states the Lord is close to the broken hearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit, and in chapter 147 it says He heals the broken hearted and binds up their wounds.  Even though we might lose something or someone very real, when we go through the deep dark pain of that loss, God is there!  He “gets it”.  He longs to provide comfort and strength to get us through those dark hours.  Cling to HIM!
We will be continuing this topic next month.  Thursday March 15th.  Please feel free to just come, and even join in on the conversation.  Our groups are confidential and free.

 

For more information, please contact us at hopeharbour@scottleagc.org