How do I deal with the death of a loved one?
Dear friend: I’m so sorry. A close death is one of the most difficult things you will ever experience. There’s almost no getting over it. Grief is less like a cold and more like a shadow, always lingering even in the brightest light. It gets easier, but it stays with you in all kinds of ways.
As a hospital chaplain, I have seen hundreds of people die now, and there’s no formula or plan or mantra to get you through. All the hard things you’re feeling, whether it’s numbness or waves of pain or a deep soul itchiness or a tight chest or an empty stomach or rivers of tears, are all a part of grief. You’re not crazy. You might see a random thing that will remind you of your loved one, and it will hit you in the gut. You might visit a street or see someone’s smile or hear a movie quote that reminds you of everything, and it will hit you all over again. That happens. You’re not crazy.
Continue reading “Grief Over the Death of a Loved One: To Move On or Hold On?”
Is suffering a “part of God’s Plan”? Does God use trials to teach us a lesson? Does everything really happen for a reason?
A hard look at the Problem of God vs. Suffering, and why easy answers won’t work in the middle of the mess.
Get my book on persevering through trials & suffering, Mad About God.
Writing this one meant a lot to me as it contains real stories from real people with heartache, loss, and (not-so-easy) redemption. I often recounted these stories with tears and prayers. Life doesn’t always wrap up in a bow-tie with a neat little lesson at the end, but people still choose to endure despite all that has happened. Even brokenly, they crawled forward and went on.
I hope you’ll consider picking up the book. It’s on sale for 8.99 in paperback and 3.99 in ebook. It’s meant for you if you’re hurting right now, and meant for your friend if they’re hurting too.
Be blessed and love y’all. — J.S.
Very thankful for Rachel Denk’s wonderful review of my latest book, Mad About God.
An excerpt from her review:
“How many times do you feel like you have to be ‘in the right mindset’ or at a ‘good place’ with God in order to come before Him? Don’t you ever feel like you’ve been told since God is almighty and righteous that we have no right to be upset or angry with Him? And when we can’t suppress pain, anger, or bitterness, all of that is somehow transformed into guilt.
“… J.S. Park beautifully deconstructs all of these notions that have been drilled into us for far too long. And guess what? It’s okay to be upset. It’s okay to be angry. It’s okay to doubt. It’s okay to not understand why things happen and question God.
“J.S. asks the hard questions. He prompts the difficult ideas. He opens the can of worms that may never truly be shut. My favorite passages from the book include Hijacking And Reclaiming Jeremiah 29:11, Our Hollywood Craze To Live An Epic Life, and The Problem With Job: As We Bleed, We Find Our Deepest Need. Sound intriguing just from the titles? You better believe it. These passages floored me – I often caught myself reading this and thinking how someone seemed to understand this little aspect of my heart and soul that had been secretly struggling for so long.”
Hello dear friends! This is an audio preview of my book Mad About God: When We Over-Spiritualize Pain and Turn Tragedy Into a Lesson, about persevering through pain and suffering.
Preface 1 – I Don’t Have It All Figured Out, and That’s Okay
Preface 2 – Perpetually Skeptical: Screaming Through The Red Sea
Preface 1 is about our crazy need to connect pain with a lesson.
Preface 2 is about the constant, uncomfortable doubts about the existence and goodness of God.
Stream here or download directly here. The book is both in paperback and ebook.
Love y’all and be blessed!
This is the Table of Contents for my book on trials and suffering, called Mad About God.
The book also talks about True Detective, Louis C.K., the Serial podcast, the pressure to be “radical” and do “great things for God,” the romanticism of third world missionaries, overly inspirational Instagrams, The Shawshank Redemption, the misquoting of Jeremiah 29:11 and David & Goliath.
It’s now in both paperback and ebook. Be blessed and love y’all!