2017 has been a year of loss for me.
I honestly can’t remember a time in my life when I’ve had so much loss at once.
After losing my bestie, Mandy, I found out that two more of my friends had unexpectedly passed within a week of each other, and two weeks later my aunt passed away.
We often think of a war room as a place we go to when we are under attack, to strategize and do spiritual warfare.
I am convinced, however, that our war rooms shouldn’t be reserved for battle alone.
In the days after my friend Mandy’s passing, I began to feel the suffocating grief of unresolved previous losses bearing down on me.
At one point, when I didn’t feel I could even take another breath, I cried out to God. “How do I do this? I don’t know how to grieve well!”
For years, following my four miscarriages, enduring loss of dreams and opportunities, and facing the loss of friendships, I kept stuffing the pain.
I ate the pain and gained 40 pounds.
I numbed the pain with work, and suffered the consequences of the chronic stress it put me through.
I drowned out the pain with constant “noise” of podcasts, social media, and television.
But one thing none of these things did was heal my pain.
After the soothing sensation of food and delicious carbs faded, the pain was still there. When I’d climb into bed after my work was done, the cacophony of all of the devices was turned off and the silence bore down on me, the pain would hit me like a sledge hammer.
But this time?
This time I’d promised God I’d do things differently.
With tears streaming down my face, I let myself feel every inch of the pain of the sudden loss of my friend. And as I cried out to the Lord, I heard His voice.
I could go back and apply His peace and healing to all of the pain I’d failed to lay at His feet before.
With notebook and pen in hand, I went to my War Room.
3 Ways to Take Your Grief To Your War Room
1. Make a List – That day I sat down and listed every loss in my life that I had never properly dealt with. Next to each loss I wrote down the various ways I’d found to numb and avoid the pain.
Once my very lengthy list was completed, I gave each loss to Jesus and repented for choosing to turn to other forms of comfort than my true Comforter.
2. Turn to Scripture – I am fascinated by how much Scripture talks about grief and comfort. Even Jesus grieved! During this time of grief I have taken all of the verses I have found on grief and comfort and compiled them in a workbook called the 30 Day Prayer Challenge for Comfort as a way of praying through each verse for a whole month.
Grief, when properly expressed, leads to healing. And we must learn to express our grief through Scripture.
3. Go to the Cross – In my first post on grief, I shared about how Jesus bore more than just our sin.
In Isaiah it says, “Surely He has borne our griefs And carried our sorrows.” When Jesus went to the cross, He didn’t just bear our sins, He bore our pain, too. He bore our grief.
Grief is too much for the human heart to carry alone, which is why Jesus bore it on our behalf. When the grief of loss threatens to overwhelm our hearts, we go to the cross. We cry out to Jesus to bear our pain.
Our war room, our prayer closet, our meeting place with God – this is where we take our pain. This is where we sit at Jesus’ feet, as Mary did. This is where we learn from Him how to walk through the valley. It is at His feet where we learn how to live with peace from the inside out, no matter our circumstances.
My War Room is my sacred place with Jesus. Holy ground. Many battles have been fought and won there. Many strategies have been drawn up and executed. Many times I have lain there in desperation and Jesus has walked up to me and whispered in my ear the very words that have brought comfort and peace to my heart and joy to my spirit.
Yes, we can take our grief to our war rooms, too.
For that is where we meet with I Am face to face, as a man speaks to his friend.
I love this film about this man of God who really knew what prayer was! George Mueller is one of my biggest heroes of the faith. You can find this biographical film and other great faith-based films to encourage your heart at PureFlix
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