My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?
Why are you so far from saving me, from the words of my groaning?
O my God, I cry by day, but you do not answer,
and by night, but I find no rest.
This Psalm offers tremendous freedom as it begins with this first gentle reminder that we can bring our pain, our hurt, and our doubt to God. We are allowed to be messy. We are allowed to ask hard questions.
For those of you walking alongside someone who is grieving, keep this reminder in mind: God allows the messy, the broken, the doubt, and all the hard questions. Extend the same grace to the one grieving. Let them ask hard questions. Let them be messy. And listen. Be attentive. Be prayerful. Remember, grief is never orderly nor is it without its share of doubt in the One who has allowed this loss to take place. Give God time to heal that which is broken, trusting in Him to do that work as you walk alongside.
We see the second reminder in verse 3:
Yet you are holy,
In the midst of the pain, the disappointment, the fear, the doubt, the hurt, David (the writer of this Psalm) intentionally and purposefully reminds himself of who God is, of His character, of the ways He has worked in the past and the ways He is working still. In the midst of the pain. When circumstances have not changed, the pain is raw, the loss and the grief threaten to overcome all that is good. In the midst of the pain. When there is no strength left (v.15), when our hearts are hurt by Him, when we feel as though He has abandoned us. In the midst of pain. When we feel alone, not heard, forsaken.
In the midst of the pain we can experience true hope when we intentionally remind ourselves the truths of who God is. And when we remind ourselves of who God is — that He is good, attentive, loving, our refuge, compassionate — our eyes momentarily shift off of our pain and back to the One who is healer.
Reminding ourselves of those truths when our heads and hearts are foggy with pain is difficult though, and can even feel impossible. I created these cards to make it just a little easier. The cards were inspired from this post by Lore Wilbert. I loved the reminders and simply added scripture references to each attribute. I pray they are a blessing to you amidst your grief.
Simply download the God Is Cards here. Save to your computer, print on heavy cardstock and trim to 3.25×3.25.