Have you experienced the loss of a loved one? Have you wandered, shaken, down a hallway after learning that your beloved family member will never walk with you again? Have you felt how much like fear grief feels? If you have, then you might think it odd, as I did, what David told his son.
As David prepared to die, he admonished Solomon to be strong and courageous. Surely David knew how paralyzing grief could be. He most certainly had experienced it himself and knew that Solomon, in order to lead as king of Israel, would need to fight those natural feelings that follow a loss. Solomon would surely feel intense sorrow at the loss of his father, but he would need to surmount that sadness. He would need to choose to be strong and courageous.
We, too, must live courageously in spite of whatever emotions we are feeling. Sometimes it simply isn’t possible in our finite human strength. However, we have this promise in Isaiah 41:10, “Do not fear, for I am with you, do not be afraid, for I am your God; I will strengthen you, I will help you?”
God, help us to be strong and courageous, knowing you will provide what we lack. Amen. — KG