Michelle M. Law-Gordon

Michelle M. Law-Gordon

We’ve often heard it said, particularly during times of trials or bereavement: “Their day today, but could be your day tomorrow,” or, “It’s just your season.”

Those words typically come when someone falls on hard times, has a bad experience or suffers a great loss. When I thought about it, I found myself wondering — if that statement is true — exactly how long does a “day or season” last.

It seems as if “MY day” and “MY season” has been on “replay,” or to say the least, on pause and rewind for the past three years. It seems as if as soon as “my day” ends, the cycle begins all over again.

I say this because in less than a year, I’ve experienced the loss of several loved ones, which by the way isn’t foreign to me, because 2016 was very similar in nature. It would seem “this day” people refer to as “my day/my season” has been ongoing, nonstop.

It seems as though I (along with my family) have experienced great grief and sorrow, while on an endless and slow walk through the valley of the shadow of death.

Is there a message in all this madness? Is there something to be gained in so much loss?

Can there be healing in the midst of so much hurt? Is there light at the end of this dark tunnel?

Can new life really come as a result of so much death?

These and many other questions come to mind as I reflect upon all that has transpired not only in my life but in the lives of several persons very near and dear to my heart. While I don’t profess to have all the answers, I’ve learned invaluable lessons while in this season of my life, and I want to share them with you.

I’ve learned that how we perceive something will determine our response to it.

I read somewhere that “death is not the opposite of life, but a part of it,” and I wholly concur. All of us will one day experience death, because contrary to popular belief, death does not discriminate. It has no concern for whether you are young or old, black or white, rich or poor, sick or well, sinner or saint It touches all of our lives.

Accept the fact that you will one day die and prepare for it. Prepare mentally, spiritually and financially. In other words, get your mind right, your soul saved and your insurance policies in order.

When dealing with the loss of a loved one, remember that what we know as “your day/your season” will occur, and when it does, you have to respond appropriately. Don’t cave in to it. Work through it.

Work through your grief emotionally, physically, spiritually and relationally. Often, grief leads one to isolation, but let me encourage you to not go into isolation. Instead, develop a closer and stronger relationship with your maker and creator, whom I know as God/Jesus.

If that’s not a familiar name to you, the Holy Bible will tell you all you need to know. Consider reading it daily, and when you find yourself in the midst of “your day/your season,” you’ll be able to live through it rather than die in it, because you won’t have to do it alone. God will be with you.

The loss of a loved one might bring about questions, and there are several ways to deal with them as well. I encourage you to seek professional counsel, journal and lean on your support system (family and friends). Writing or talking about your loss will aid you in processing it.

Maintain a healthy diet and engage in regular physical exercise.

Treat every day as if it will be your last, and never look too far into the future. While the future is important, the present is the only moment you can control right now.

At times, it might be necessary to make short-term sacrifices to accomplish long-term goals; but never sacrifice something you will regret.

Spend time in prayer and meditation, and trust that God has equipped you with everything you need to handle your new normal. Things won’t be the same after your loss, and time will not heal your hurt, but through prayer and meditation, it will be more bearable.

Over the past three years, more than ever, people have said to me, “You’re so strong” or they’ve asked, “How do you do it?” My response would have to be, “It is because of my faith in a God who loves me.”

As I walked through the valley of the shadow of death, I continuously reflected upon God’s love. Reflecting on God’s love didn’t instantly remove my sorrow, but it did ease my pain and give me hope. I discovered that God is stable and unchanging, displaying a love that never ends. His love is constant, and his presence is forever near, so I encourage you to keep trusting His steadfast love and you will get through “your day/your season” when the time comes.

Perhaps it’s not “your season/your day” right now, but you know someone who this applies to, I encourage you to “comfort them with the same comfort you have received. …” (1 Cor 1:3-4).

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Michelle M. Law-Gordon is the pastor of Open Door Baptist Church and a lifelong member of New Ebenezer Baptist Church in Florence. She is a member of the Morning News’ Faith & Values Advisory Board. Contact her and other board members at fvboard@florencenews.

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