A Few Thoughts about Loss, Grief, and Anger

A Question about Loss

I want to answer a question. (Source)

Here is what a father asked concerning his child:

He’s very angry with God and his issues seem to be summed up in the problem of evil. He acknowledges God is, but “I don’t want to worship him when he messed up my life and took my brother”. Anyone have a handle on how to deal with this? Any experience with a similar situation?

My answer:

B1 I would need clarification.

C1 It seems reasonable that his brother is a Christian. So, I would ask, “You do know that your brother is in heaven with believing family members who have died, the believers of all generations, the holy angels and God Himself?”
C2 Then I would need to know how he died. The reason for this stems from several issues.
D1 His brother made a wrong choice. Doesn’t matter what the choice was but that if the brother made a risky choice, he knew the possibility of dying. Risky does not mean sinful. It could have been a construction accident, for example. Another example would be in the case of living for Jesus angered a government, a group, or a person, and the brother died for the faith.
D2 His brother experienced the wrong choice of some other person. For example, someone passed on a hill, and there was a collision with his brother. Also included in this is the example of Job. Satan wanted to torment Job to induce Job to deny the faith. God allowed satan but did not order satan to do the evil deeds Job experienced. Satan did not have to do them but choose to do them.
D3 God knew that your brother was going to experience some painful experience and wanted to spare him. Painful can be emotional and/or physical perhaps torture or sickness, for example.
D4 God knew that your brother had finished his course of this life. 2 Timothy 4:7 EMTV I have fought the good fight. I have finished the race, I have kept the faith.
C3 Finally, I would note the reason for his anger was from the loss of his beloved brother, and he blamed God.
D1 God is the counselor of all counselors, so praying to God expressions as these are ok.
E1 The Psalmist in anguish speaks to God, “How much longer will you forget me, LORD? Forever? How much longer will you hide yourself from me?” (Psalm 13:1 GNB)
E2 Psalms 74:1 CEV (A special psalm by Asaph.) Our God, why have you completely rejected us? Why are you so angry with the ones you care for?
E3 Psalms 80:4 NIrV LORD God who rules over all, how long will your anger burn against the prayers of your people?
E4 Psalms 85:5 NIrV Will you be angry with us forever? Will you be angry for all time to come?
D2 Anger (including blaming others) is a stage in the grief process. See here and here.

So, in summary:

B1 Listen, really listen. Do not interrupt except to clarify. Do not share whatever experience you went through. We are to listen, not compete.
B2 Go through the stages of grief. God created us to have these stages, so it is OK to be angry. Anger at loss is fairly common. No one has to go through all the stages. Everyone handles loss differently. Journaling, yelling, hitting a pillow, etc. are constructive ways of handling anger. I would go down to our creek and either cry or tell God I’m angry (as if He didn’t know). Anger is a common trait of God and His creation (See Mark 3:5, Luke 13:15, and Psalm 103:8). (Compare Ephesians 4:26). This anger is from pain of loss. Consider a grief counselor. Some tips here
B3 God is the Counselor of all counselors, the greatest, and the best. Remind them that God does not become angry at us for sharing our pain with Him.

Loss, Grief, Anger stage of grief, Counsel

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