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GriefShare Ministry – 2021

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GriefShare is an important ministry that has been sponsored at New Life for approximately 8 years now. What is GriefShare you might ask? It is a Christ-centered and biblically based program designed to help people who are grieving the loss of a beloved person or persons in their life. These precious, hurting people are gently presented with hope and healing that can only come from God through a relationship with Jesus Christ.

For me personally, it was the loss of our son Brent that brought me to GriefShare. Although the emotions and pain of grieving are identified in seven basic stages. I can say from my own experience, we all will go through them differently from an emotional aspect. GriefShare helps you to get through your own unique grieving process.

After Brent’s funeral, I quickly began feeling the distance of family and friends because my pain seemed to never want to come to a place of peace within me and too, they were having a difficult time understanding why my grief wasn’t ending on what they thought was an appropriate time frame of grieving. Even God seemed distant to me but only because of my anger towards Him. This is not an uncommon feeling for the grieving.

Despite my initial anger with God, GriefShare made a huge impact on me personally by bringing me closer to the Lord, to know that I can lean on Him, knowing only He utterly understands my heart. Only God willingly follows the grieving to the depths of our despair and helps us to rise above our pain through the blood of Jesus.

Psalm 71:1 says, “Forsake me not when my strength is spent. In you, O Lord do I take refuge.” It was when I really read this verse from my heart that I realized I needed God to get me through the pain of losing our son. It wasn’t until I had asked God to use me in His service that I was able to face my grief with a purpose.

Now today as an anchor and facilitator to the GriefShare program, I genuinely believe God put me exactly where I needed to be to better serve His purposes. I still have my moments where I cry, remembering the pain of my loss, but that’s okay. That is all part of the healing process, however long that may be. It’s in the valley you meet God and from there, He lifts you up and brings you closer to Him by giving you the hope you need to press on with your life.

All the facilitators have gone through the GriefShare program and speaking for myself, it is undoubtedly a valuable resource for gently bringing people through their grief and to build a deeper relationship with God.       Time and time again, I and the others who facilitate in this GriefShare program for adults and youth (who meet separately), see where God is working and using us in such a mighty way.

The people who created GriefShare explain it best, “We stress the importance of a relationship with Jesus Christ as the foundation for healing. The pain of grief is one of the most intense feelings a human being can face. The emotional damage cuts to the soul. True healing of this kind of pain can only come from God’s presence in the life of a person experiencing it. This presence comes through a personal relationship with Jesus Christ.

Although the message of Christ cannot be forced on anyone, participants in the GriefShare groups will hear this concept presented in a sensitive but clear manner through video presentation and discussion facilitated by loving and caring people in a 14-week cycle that meets on Thursday each week at 6:30 pm right here in the building. We feel it is our responsibility to point people hurting from grief to the only source of true healing, our Lord Jesus Christ. GriefShare views the Bible as the “owner’s manual” for life. It is not uncommon for participants to repeat the sessions multiple times because the benefits are ongoing..

Participants are not charged to be in the program; however we will gladly accept donations to cover the materials we purchase for the participants. Please, as a New Life family, join us in praying each week for the participants and the facilitators of GriefShare. If you are lead to inquire about serving as a facilitator just reach out to me and I would be happy to share with you more.

Blessings of peace in Jesus Christ,

Robin Mattson

Categories: Ministry Highlight

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