Tim Gombis: “I Welcomed Grief …”

Tom Gombis is a professor at Grand Rapids Theological Seminary.  As Dan Patrick would say, his blog, “Faith Improvised”, has been “en fuego” throughout the coronavirus shutdown.

The piece that spoke most clearly to me is “I Welcomed Grief as a Friend.”  What follows is a sample, but you should read the whole thing.

Paul’s paradoxes shape my thought: God wins by losing; slavery is freedom; death leads to life; the cross brings resurrection; weakness is power; down is up.

I came to see that to get free from the fear of what I would lose, I needed to grieve the loss of everything dear to me. And so, I did, over many months.

I grieved the loss of my daughter and sons, my partner in marriage, the parents I love, my health and even life, my friends, my status in the guild, my writing projects, my house, my privileged position, the respect of my colleagues.

I visited every part of my life with the grief of its loss.

And a miracle surprised me. Everything I put on a cross was enfolded in resurrection. What I lamented became a wellspring of life. Each thing I gave up I received back as a gift. Wherever I mourned was a site of celebration.

I welcomed grief as a friend, and this is the happiest season of my life.

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