How to Deal with Grief

“Guard your heart above all else, for it determines
the course of your life.” ~ Proverbs 4:23

Grief is a normal human emotion that occurs whenever loss of any kind occurs. The degree of grief is directly related to the degree of loss or of perceived loss.

Portrait of lonely depressed man sitting on the floor

Grief has stages. Healthful grieving involves going through these stages, not necessarily in consecutive order.

To deal with grief in a healthful way, do the following:

1–Admit your grief. Do not attempt to deny it.

2–Express your grief in a safe and healthful way. 

3–Do not allow anyone to tell you how you should feel. Your feelings are your own, unique to you.

4–Recognize that events in the future may trigger a return of your grief. Expect such triggers, and do not be surprised by them.

5–First and foremost, give your grief to our Heavenly Father. He understands grief, and He alone can provide the comfort you need to prevent grief from becoming disabling to you.

There is a time for grief, but that time should not last forever. If you are still experiencing grief after a reasonable amount of time has passed since your loss, ask the Lord to show you the reason and to heal you. If necessary, seek the help of your pastor, a counselor, or a close friend.

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The Fearful Heart

Do you have a fearful heart? What is a fearful heart? It is a heart that operates out of fear instead of faith.

A fearful heart manifests in many ways:

  • It chooses safety over risk.
  • It chooses comfort over sacrifice.
  • It chooses pulling back rather than pressing forward.

Did you know that God hates a fearful heart? His Word says that He takes “no pleasure in the one who shrinks back” (Hebrews 10:38). So, what do we do if we have a fearful heart?

Here are a few things that have helped me fight fear in my life:

  • Do what you fear to do.  Facing your fear is a huge part of overcoming it. You will discover that doing the thing you fear builds your confidence.
  • Move out of your comfort zone. Your comfort zone is your mediocre zone. Comfort brings mediocrity; risk-taking brings growth.
  • Fear God more than man. This is the most important tip I can offer you. Scripture says that “fearing people is a dangerous trap . . . .” (Proverbs 29:25).  But when we fear God above all else, we begin to become wise (Psalm 111:10).

If you have a fearful heart, let me encourage you. Find Scripture verses that deal with fear and memorize them. Speak them aloud as often as you can. Soon you will develop an image of yourself in your spirit as a person of great courage, a person who fears only God and moves forward in His power and might.

Copyright 2015 by Dr. MaryAnn Diorio. All Rights Reserved.