Every new season of life, whether good or bad, brings with it a sense of loss.
The birth of a new child brings a loss of sleep.
Starting a new job brings the loss of your familiar routine.
Graduating college brings the loss of familiar community.
Moving to a new city, state, country brings the loss of home.
Marriage brings the loss of selfish desires.
Every season, every time, brings loss.
We just don’t always recognize it.
The excitement of a new season often overshadows our sense of loss. We get caught up in the new season, excited for the possibilities it may hold, that we forget one crucial step in the transition.
In our fast-paced, get-me-where-I-want-to-be world, we rarely take time to grieve our losses.
We plow ahead full steam and don’t recognize we’ve been affected until it’s too late.
Right before the children of Israel crossed into the Promised Land, they took time to grieve. A whole month to be exact. It seems crazy to us. Here they were on the verge of stepping into one of the greatest chapters in their story, about to receive the promise their ancestors waited 400 years to receive, ready to walk into the land they dreamt about for the 40 years they wandered that desert.
I’m sure they were itching to cross the Jordan and take what was theirs.
I know I would be.
But they waited. And grieved.
Their new chapter started with the death of their leader.
Moses was a hundred and twenty years old when he died, yet his eyes were not weak nor his strength gone. 8 The Israelites grieved for Moses in the plains of Moab thirty days, until the time of weeping and mourning was over.
Moses was dead. The time had come. The promise was within reach.
And they waited.
30 whole days.
They sat on the banks of the river grieving the loss of the man who brought them out of slavery, all the while looking at the promise they were supposed to take. I’m sure the first week, they felt the weight of Moses’ passing. But the second week? The third? The fourth? There were probably those among them itching to get up and get doing.
At least, most of us would feel that way.
Enough crying. It’s time to take what is ours.
But the Israelites new the power of grieving their loss. They knew the importance of stopping to mourn what they no longer had. It allowed them to move forward with Joshua as their leader, and not wish for the good ol’ days when Moses was their leader.
Grieving loss, any form of loss, better prepares us to move ahead in what God has called us to do. Tweet this
So if you’re transitioning into a chapter of life, take time to grieve your loss. Recognize that there are some relationships, routines, disciplines, and comforts that won’t cross into your new chapter – and will be gone forever. Allow yourself time to feel the weight of that loss.
Otherwise, down the road, the loss will hit you when and try to derail you from God’s plan.
What do you think – where do you need to grieve the loss of your old season? Leave a comment below.
Background photo credit: Jöey via photopin cc