Summary: When loss comes we do many things, some bad, some ok, but there is really only one 'best' thing for us to do... TURN TO JESUS!
Sermon Title: When Loss Comes To Our Lives
Sermon Text: John 11:17-44 [ESV]
Sermon Series: Recognizing and Responding to God’s Word
The Vietnam Veterans Memorial in Washington D.C. was dedicated in 1982. During the first 15 years, 54,000 items were left at the Wall.
Today it still takes almost an hour every night, [and much longer on Memorial Day,] to collect all the mementos -a teddy bear, a photo of a soldier's grandchild, a letter from a daughter who never knew her dad.
Every item is labeled and taken to a warehouse. No one knows quite how to deal with it all. "No one ever expected this to happen," a park ranger says. "It's so personal."
If you have lived life for any length of time, we all know that loss comes to us all! So often we carry our grief for many years. We struggle with emotions, we look for comfort, we seek for a place where we can leave our sorrows and find healing for the wounds of life…
Today I want to share with you that when loss comes our way we can do several things, some bad, some ok… but one is the best!
1. Turn to Fraudulent Facts v.21, 32
Criticize God v.21, 32
21 Martha said to Jesus, "Lord, if you had been here, my brother would not have died.
32 Now when Mary came to where Jesus was and saw him, she fell at his feet, saying to him, "Lord, if you had been here, my brother would not have died."
Blame others Gen 3:12-13
Adam: 12 The man said, "THE WOMAN whom you gave to be with me, SHE GAVE me fruit of the tree, and I ate." Let me point out that the Implication here as well is that Adam is also blaming GOD for his failure, after all it was God who gave him the woman…right?
Eve: 13 Then the LORD God said to the woman, "What is this that you have done?" The woman said, "THE SERPENT deceived me, and I ate."
Adam and Eve both knew immediately that they had lost something special because of their actions, but they were not willing to take responsibility for their choices, so they struck out at those around them.
Now when loss comes our way, it doesn’t have to be our fault for us to strike out…sometimes the hardest loss to deal with for us as humans is the loss where there is no explanation… but we still strike out because we are hurting inside and we think that this ‘hurt’ will be lessened if we can lay blame somewhere. How many times have you found yourself striking out at others…or even shaking your fist at God when you experienced loss?
What we have to realize, that as believers… striking out at those around us, trying to play the blame game… does not alleviate the pain of our loss… It does not lessen our grief or hurt… when we face lost we don’t need to turn to the Fraudulent Facts…
But this morning I want to tell you about another place we can turn when loss comes our way! This is a better place that the blame game and turning against everyone around us… it is actually just the opposite! This is turning to those friendly faces around us!