Theology is Not the Answer for Grief

by | Feb 3, 2023

When Gus first died, I wanted to stay at home all the time. The reason was simple. I didn’t have the emotional bandwidth to be sweet when others said or did annoying things, so I stayed to myself.

There are people I encounter who love me very much but aren’t the best at wisely handling situations of loss or grief. They feel the need to try to explain to me why God took Gus to heaven when He did and give me a bunch of theological mumbo jumbo. It is emotionally exhausting and it’s hard for me to be patient.

I am not craving theology right now.

I have more theological education than the majority of people I talk to, and no matter how much theology has been pumped into this brain of mine it’s not going to make me miss Gus any less.

I go on social media and share my grief.

But I am not shaking my fist at God.

Gus and I received a miracle.

I am not angry, or bitter, or questioning God.

I never once asked God why Gus died.

I know why.

He was 92 years old.

His time on earth was done.

That’s why the Lord took him home.

But there are the “explainers” who feel they must give me a reason, as if that is going to comfort me.

It does the opposite.

I was super blessed this past week that during an entire week in Branson at the Assemblies of God Leadership Conference, not even ONE person tried to explain Gus’s death to me. I spoke with literally HUNDREDS of people. All but two or three people brought Gus up in conversation. Not ONE of them attempted to defend God unnecessarily. It was so beautiful to simply be loved on and have no one telling me how to feel.

Maybe it’s because I was with extremely seasoned leaders, all of whom should know by now that the more we know about God or anything, the more we realize how much we don’t know. No one can give God’s reasoning on Gus’s death. They aren’t God.

In a room where there were plenty of theologians, no one offered up any theology this week.

It was absolutely glorious.

Take note that when people are hurting, theology is not a healing balm.

All your explanations are not helpful, but your presence is enough.

Love is enough.


    • Deanna Shrodes

      Yes, it was a wonderful week of being encouraged by my peers and leaders. I am grateful.

  1. Jennifer Morgan

    I lost my mom who was 89, she was independent and had all her facilities, she did suddenly due to heart failure. She was my best friend and I don’t think I will ever get over this, but I do know I have to find a way to cope! I have always had a hard time expressing my feelings, due to dyslexia.
    But you hit it right on the nose! I just want your presence, you don’t even have to talk to me just sit with me in silence! Right now the hardest for me is sleeping, it’s like waking up to it all over again after only a few hours of sleep! Thank you for these Blogs, I am also doing grief share with my church. I love you Dianna and appreciate all you do at PF for us woman. God Bless 💜😂

    • Deanna Shrodes

      I am so sorry for your loss, Jennifer. I know this was an unexplainable loss. I am glad this spoke to you in a deep way. Love you very much as well.

  2. Susan Chaya

    Thank you! I think it is hard for me to put into word how much you minister to me. It seems I have had pain for so long for various reasons, don’t get me wrong there is joy too but the pain seems to never go away. When I read your posts, blog and emails, I get so much encouragement. I am very grateful for you. In the most recent email, two of the quotes that you shared brought tears to my eyes. Sometimes I think you can see right into my heart. I really appreciate you and God uses what you say to minister to me. Thank you.


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