Sunday, July 01, 2007

Healthy Grieving: Final Post


We've come to the end of our series on grief with Kathy Padgett from 121 Community Church in Grapevine, Texas. Kathy graciously answers two more questions for us below. Thanks so much to Kathy for her willingness to share her knowledge and expertise in an area that's difficult to contemplate and endure, and widely misunderstood. The series began several days ago so you may want to scroll down to Monday's post if you're just joining us.

Sarah:

Two more question, Kathy: Question #10: Should grieving people seek out others in pain? Or does this potentially keep people depressed and more focused on loss?

Kathy:

One of the very best things a grieving person can do - and this has been proven over and over - is to go to a grief support group! So, yes, the answer is: seek out others in pain! But do it in a healthy environment. Nobody can understand you like someone who feels like they are you! Don't be afraid of support groups. Many hospitals and churches offer grief support/recovery groups. There is a "brotherhood" among grieving people that others can't understand. When I led grief support groups at the hospital, very often I didn't have to say a word for over half of the discussion time! They helped each other more than I helped them and that's the point!

Sarah:

Question #11... your final thoughts on getting through grief...

Kathy:

This may sound like a "churchy/minister-y" thing to say, but cultivating an intimate relationship with your Creator now is really the only weapon you have for getting ready for loss, and for surviving it when it hits.

It will hit. God will be there. If you know Him now, you will be more able to feel Him then. The four "tools" I described the other day are extremely helpful (THINK, WRITE, TALK, WEEP) and staying connected to people who love you is vital. Don't shut others out. Even if they say stupid things (people never know what to say to someone in grief), know that you are loved and that people have something to offer you. Eventually, you will notice that you don't hurt as much as you did.

I'll end with another quote by C.S. Lewis: "There was no sudden, striking and emotional transition...like the warming of a room or the coming of daylight, when you first notice them they have already been going on for some time."

Sarah:

Good, hopeful concluding thoughts, Kathy Thank you so much!



Kathy Padgett is the Women's Lifegroup and Pastoral Care Minister at 121 Community Church in Grapevine, Texas. Prior to joining 121, she served as a hospital and home-care chaplain. Kathy is a graduate of Dallas Theological Seminary (DTS).







(Photo by FreeWine; see http://flickr.com/photos/freewine/478332550/ for restrictions.)

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