For by Him all things were created, both in the heavens and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities—all things have been created through Him and for Him. He is before all things, and in Him all things hold together. Colossians 1:16:17 ESV
For it was fitting for Him, for whom are all things, and through whom are all things, in bringing many sons to glory, to perfect the author of their salvation through sufferings. Hebrews 2:10
Yet for us there is but one God, the Father, from whom are all things and we exist for Him; and one Lord, Jesus Christ, by whom are all things, and we exist through Him. I Corinthians 8:6 (ESV)
[God] hath in these last days spoken unto us by his Son, whom he hath appointed heir of all things, by whom also he made the worlds. Hebrews 1:2
Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. Philippians 4:6 (ESV)
I have four friends who have lost loved ones in the past month. It seems like a tidal wave of sorrow as I have talked to them, and remember the crisis of the first days of grief. They cannot sleep. Their shoulders sag, and they think they are coming down with a cold. Time is moving in slow motion, and it seems impossible to organize the demands of the day. They don’t want to talk to friends right now, and are not interested in busy activities. And while they retreat in solitude, they have headaches, and they worry about the future and other family members who are overwhelmed with grief. They stare in emptiness and wonder why tears don’t come, and once in a while they just want to throw something!
I love you, my friends, and today I write for you. You have not lost your faith, and you are not getting Alzheimer’s! Be good to yourself today, and learn a lesson from the lowly preposition. (You remember the list we memorized as kids in grammar class—by, in, from, through, between, before, and after, etc.). Filter your anxieties through the One who is holding you today. We exist by Him and through Him—the present is in our Savior’s hands. By Him all things were made—the past is in His hands. And in Him, all things hold together—the future is in His hands too. The New Testament writers remind us through the lowly preposition that God has not forgotten us. He is in every detail. The antidote for anxiety is prayer, supplication, and gratitude. As I write these words, I feel the tension of my shoulders relax and my mind becomes less scattered. I think about the 103rd Psalm and use its words to express my gratitude to God. I think about Psalm 37, and I ask God to help me stop fretting, and to trust, delight, commit, and rest. When I am overwhelmed by sorrow, I will trust in God and rest a while.
God does not expect a person overwhelmed by grief to keep on doing. There is time to mourn, and He will join you in your place of affliction. In all their affliction he was afflicted, and the angel of his presence saved them; in his love and in his pity he redeemed them; he lifted them up and carried them all the days of old (Isaiah 63:9). Ask Him to join you today and carry you as you rest in His love!