I Wonít Walk Away
There are 3 situations that people find themselves in after someone dies.
There are those who canít walk away. They might find themselves waking up one morning 3 months later having an anxiety attack when they realize that they canít bring back the person who is gone. This will be true for months and years afterwards. They might find that people around them want to move on, but they are still having a hard time. They canít walk away. It hits them every day.
There are those who can walk away. When tragedy strikes, they feel an overwhelming sense of grief, and the funeral and other events (if any) provide a means for them to express their grief and deal with it. It is very hard for them, but as time goes on the events become less and less important. Life continues to bring changes, and they move on and most of the time they forget. The memory is still there, but since they werenít really close to the person who died they can walk away emotionally.
There are those who wonít walk away. As time goes on, these people simply wonít let themselves forget. They wonít let their friend who suffered a loss go on without letting them know in little ways that they are there for them. They wonít walk away from the pain because it isnít their own. They wonít stop thinking every day about the loved one who is gone. They are sensitive to holidays, birthdays, special anniversaries, and always wonder how their friend is doing. They send flowers, cards, and other gifts that remind their friend that they care, and that they are there for them - as long as they can.
If you are one of those who wonít walk away it doesnít necessarily mean that you knew the person who died. It doesnít necessarily mean that you are getting any rewards for what you are doing for the bereaved person. It just means that you care, and that you arenít just thinking about yourself and your own needs. Perhaps it is a great sacrifice, a great inconvenience, but you are there, and your loyalty and desire to encourage your friend is the motivating force behind your actions.
Jesus wept when he saw his friends die (John 11:32-35). He groaned in agony as he faced his own death when he was praying in the garden of Gethsemane (Luke 22:41-42). Unlike us, who seldom know the future, Jesus knew everything that was going to happen to him in the hours after Gethsemane. He prayed for a way of escape. But his Fatherís answer to him in the events that followed was No - not if mankind is to be saved.
When he was on the cross, they made fun of him. They said, ďHe saved others, but he could not save himself Ē (Luke 23:35). How true that was! If he was to walk away, his friends would perish. But if he stayed (when he didnít have to) and laid down his life, his friends would be saved.
ďNo greater love has anyone than this, that they lay down their life for their friendĒ (John 15:13).
This statement has to be the greatest reason you could ever have for being in category 3, those who wonít walk away.
I wonít walk away from you, my friend.
I will care for you to the bitter end.
I will cherish you and send,
Constant loving reminders that try to defend,
You from the harsh winds of life that bend,
And break others around you, my friend.
This is the commitment of a true friend. There may be no reward except the satisfaction of knowing that someone who might have dried up and blown away is continually thriving in your emotional sunshine and the presence of God who never leaves our side.
God works through people. He works through people who wonít walk away.