The End of an Earthly Relationship

Steve Petroelje

READ: John 11:32-37

Jesus wept. (v. 35)

We were designed by God to live in community with others. This community reflects the nature of a triune God. God said, “It is not good that the man should be alone” (Gen. 2:18). When God’s Son, the second person of the Trinity, came to earth as a man, Luke 2:52 reveals that “Jesus increased in wisdom and in stature and in favor with God and man.” Earthly relationships can bring us love, companionship, support, and friendship. Healthy and God-honoring relationships are blessings from our Creator.

The end of an earthly relationship brings grief and pain. The death of a spouse, parent, or child separates us from someone we dearly love. The end of a dating relationship or a divorce brings a variety of emotions and loss. Sometimes an earthly relationship doesn’t end, but it changes. A move, job termination, change of church family, or the relocation of a kind neighbor can cause us to feel empty and alone.

When he encountered the sting of death, Jesus wept (John 11:35). At the death of his father, Jacob, Joseph wept (Gen. 50:1). When his life was in jeopardy from Saul and required his separation from Jonathan, David wept (1 Sam. 20:41). Likewise, most of us have or will grieve the end of an earthly relationship. In the midst of the grief, we hold on to the words of Jesus to Martha in John 11:25: “I am the resurrection and the life. The one who believes in me will live, even though they die” (NIV).

Wonderful Counselor, comfort us when we grieve. Amen.