“While Jesus was still speaking, some men came from the house of Jairus, the synagogue ruler. ‘Your daughter is dead’, they said, ‘Why bother the teacher any more?’ Ignoring what they said, Jesus told the synagogue ruler, ‘Don’t be afraid; just believe’”.
Mk 5:35, 36 NIV
One of the hardest parts of human existence is the stark reality that it doesn’t last for ever. Even for those who are blessed with long life, its end comes as a shock to all around them. And we all find something very eerie and awesome about the presence of a dead body. When it happens to a young person the shock and grief are almost unbearable. It comes as a denial of life, a contradiction of reason, and an intrusion into our pleasant sense of well-being. And it raises the whole question of life after death, a mystery that has baffled and challenged all people in all faiths and cultures at all times.
Whilst he was busy affirming and healing the woman with the haemorrhage messengers came from Jairus’ house with the worst news he had ever received. The girl was dead! The bottom fell out of Jairus’ world in that moment. There is nothing, but nothing, worse than losing a child – even if that child is a fully grown person and you are old and have “seen it all”. When it is a young child you find yourself asking, “Why? Why? What a waste of a life”.
Christian disciples need to tread very carefully when they seek to care for and comfort parents in this situation. Contact the organization called “The Compassionate Friends”. They are all parents who have walked this road and know just how to relate to others coping with the tragedy.
Lord, comfort and strengthen all parents who have lost a child.