This week, many people all around the world have been mourning the loss of Nelson Mandela.
In Ecclesiastes 3 we’re told that there is a time for everything, including “a time to mourn.” (3:4) We can never really plan for a specific time to mourn. Though, I do believe we can prepare ourselves on some level.
If a loss happens to a friend or acquaintance, it can be of great benefit to clear our schedules for them. There will always be work demands and planned days for recreation. However, loss isn’t something we can mark on our calendars. We may just find that our employers, coworkers and friends might even rally around our efforts.
We can choose to be prepared to use our gifts and abilities to assist in a time of mourning.
On the flip side, if we’re the one experiencing the loss of a loved one; it is our time to mourn. Allow the details surrounding burial, memorials and even the needs of the day, be cared for by the people around us. They will rise to the occasion with their gifts and abilities, and surround us in service.
Allow them to serve and trust in their care, so that we can focus on grieving our loss.
The Body of Christ is brought into powerful unity in times of grief. Petty discussions on ministry plans, budgets and events get thrown to the wind; as God’s people surround their brothers and sisters.
The role of a ministry leader is to plush everything aside and embrace those moments. Gifting in leadership and/or shepherding can assist in rallying the people. Not to mention the enumerable opportunities to share the Gospel with friends and family members who may not know the saving grace of Jesus Christ.
We can plan for and assume that at some point in our ministry, we will be taking time to mourn.
How has the Body of Christ surrounded you during a time of mourning?