Grieving, Gratefulness and Grace


Grieving, Gratefulness and Grace
We often experience immense joy and sorrow together, especially during major life changes.
"Joy is hidden in sorrow and sorrow in joy. If we try to avoid sorrow at all costs, we may never taste joy..." said author Henri Nouwen.
If you or a friend are in a difficult season right now, here are three reflections to help along the way.
Let friends nourish you
Consider reaching out to a friend if you need help with meals. Most people are more than happy to help, though not everyone thinks ahead to create a schedule when it is needed. Share your needs and emotional experience.
Organizing meals for a few weeks can provide much-needed support both physically and emotionally. If the situation is especially sudden and hard, we have created some helpful questions to ask a friend when you discuss setting up a meal schedule. We know emotions can make it hard to think!
In less than 5 minutes, you can create a free online meal schedule at and share it with others.
Look for the subtle grace
Change can lead to opportunities even when it comes with the deepest emotions of sorrow, regret and loss. Look for the subtle grace around you in life. Help your grieving friends do the same. Walk alongside one another. Sometimes your presence is the gift. No words needed.
A family in our community lost their daughter after a sudden illness and three weeks in intensive care. It was a heart-breaking loss that touched many lives and continues to do so. While this family continues to process their deep grief, they have been an inspiration to others with their strong faith, love for music and commitment to be grateful.
The first song they played in the hospital for their daughter was "Grateful" by May Erlewine. The family shared, "Find a quiet moment, listen with us, and weep with us. We listen as a meditation, and in hope for the grace found within the melody and lyrics." The Steel Wheels (her Dad plays fiddle) performed the song at her memorial service.
The Brubaker family continues to share their journey on a blog I Will Be Grateful. Listen to "Grateful" by May Erlewine here.
Care for yourself whatever happens
Whatever your difficult transition is, whatever loss you have experienced, care for yourself with love and compassion. Eat well. Slow down. Share your needs and emotions. Seek counseling and soul care. It is important to care for yourself so you can slowly heal and rebuild.
Let your support community surround you in the journey. I challenge each of us to be intentional in recognizing and caring for others in difficult seasons. We weren't designed to walk this journey alone.
Always choose love.
The Brubaker family discovered was more than just about friends bringing a meal. They appreciated the brief intimate connections with friends as they gave hugs and placed warm dishes on the kitchen counter. They were not ready to spend long amounts of time with people so the action of dropping off food and getting to share hugs and talk briefly was just what they needed at that time. They were comforted to know others cared so well for them.

Read other recent articles by Lindsey Shantz:

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Adina & Maureen
Adina & Maureen

Welcome! We're thrilled you stopped by. Our own joys and sorrows have taught us that a well-timed meal delivered by a friend is one of the best gifts imaginable. In this space, we share our favorite recipes to take to friends, meal-taking tips, and other ways to care for those who are dear to you.

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