How I Find Joy Amidst the Sorrow
“…your sorrow shall be turned into joy.” John 16:20
This past Friday I shared in my Instagram stories that I lost my sweet Grandpa, my Mom’s father, very unexpectedly. This was and is extremely difficult for me, but I am truly trying to find joy amidst the sorrow.
Grandpa went by “Pops” and he lived right behind my house. I can see his home from my kitchen window, and we stopped by often to say hello, bring him meals or go fishing off his dock.
I watched him drive by almost every day to get the mail or visit the pharmacy. Oftentimes he was driving to my Mom’s house down the road for supper. If I was out in my yard, he would stop and roll his window down to see how I was doing, and we would chat back and forth from either side of our white picket fence.
He would always tell me how beautiful the house looked and what a great job Mike and I were doing. I will miss that encouragement so much.
My siblings all live in this same town, and we were all very close to him. While it is so painful to have lost my Grandpa, I think it’s even harder to watch my Mom grieve the loss of her father. We only cry because death is so final here on earth, but I’m so thankful for the hope we have in Christ.
We will see my Grandpa again one day, not because he was a good man or because he went to church. We will see him because we know that he put his faith and trust in Christ alone to save him.
The week before my Grandpa passed away, we lost a wonderful man that attends our church. He was faithful, dependent, full of joy and such an encourager. His name was Ron, and we loved him so much. We lost my Grandpa the day after Ron’s funeral, and needless to say, it all felt like too much.
Too much pain. Too much sorrow. Two amazing men that made such a difference in my life, gone just like that. So how do I find joy amidst the sorrow?
God in His sovereignty knew exactly what I would need during this time, and about a month ago I felt led to start reading the book of John.
What an encouragement this book has been during this very difficult season. Here are just a few of the verses I have written down in my journal –
“I will not leave you comfortless, I will come to you.” John 14:18
“Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you, not as the world giveth, give I unto you: Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid. “ John 14:27
“…your sorrow shall be turned into joy.” John 16:20
“…and your joy no man taketh from you.” John 16:21
“…ask, and ye shall receive, that your joy may be full.” John 16:24
“These things have I spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.” John 16:33
I know that it’s okay to be sad. I’m going to miss my Grandpa very much. But even in the midst of my sadness, my inner joy will remain.
Grandpa is no longer experiencing pain. He is no longer experiencing loneliness. He is with my Grandma, but most importantly he is with the Lord.
I want to end by sharing a few of my favorite memories of Grandpa. When we were little and Grandma and Grandpa lived further away, my parents would let us go to their house all alone with no other siblings (I have three) and we would get spoiled for one whole week. They would make our favorite foods and take us places that interested us.
Well, Grandma and Grandpa were the ones that introduced me to Little Women (the 1994 version), and at 7 years old I fell in love with the movie. I asked my Grandpa if he would buy me the soundtrack, and I can remember sitting on their living room floor, right in front of the CD player, listening to it from start to finish.
That day feels like yesterday. What child sits and listens to nothing but music for an hour? I’ve always been an odd one. I can only imagine what Grandma and Grandpa were thinking, haha.
I was also very much into fairies at one point, and I can remember Grandpa helping me create the most amazing fairy house. We built it from sticks that I found in the woods behind his home, and we used moss, acorns, rocks, leaves…anything we could find to make the perfect dwelling place for the fairies. I just knew they used it every night. I was certain!
Grandpa also took me to a home improvement store once so that we could make a bird bath together. He pushed me in the cart down the aisles until we found a bag of concrete mix.
I remember bringing it back to his house, helping him pour it into a wheel barrow and watching him mix it up with water. We dug a whole in his yard, poured the concrete in and pressed our hands into the cement. Mike and I now have Grandpa’s wheel barrow, and I don’t think I could ever part with it. Such special memories with Grandpa.
One time I was trying to build a fort in his backyard, and I asked if I could use the tarp that was folded up behind his garage for my roof. He walked over with me and had me take one end as he took the other, and when we lifted the tarp we broke open a wasps’ nest that was inside. Four or five wasps stung my legs and I really don’t remember much after that…just lots of tears, and Grandpa carrying me inside for a cool washcloth to ease the pain.
I could go on and on, but isn’t it amazing the things we remember from our childhood? If you are a Grandparent reading this, take the time to do special things with your grandchildren. Build fairy houses and make bird baths. Your grandchildren will remember that for the rest of their lives.
And mammas, if you’re able to, make sure Grandma and Grandpa are involved in your kids’ lives. I know it’s not always possible, but try your best to make it happen. Life is so short, and we aren’t promised tomorrow. There is nothing like time with grandparents.
I hope to share my normal content here again very soon, but I really needed to share these thoughts and I’m so glad that I did. Thanks for reading today friends, and please keep my family and especially my Mom in your prayers.
Love you all so much
Precious Andrea ~
My deepest sympathy to your Mom & you, your entire family. I love all the sweet memories you have that will bring you comfort in the future.
We are so blessed to have God’s promise of heaven through salvation in Christ. What a day that will be when we all see Him face to face!
God be with you, Dearheart ~praying for your precious family.
Much love, Susan
Thank you so much Susan, so very true!
Andrea, so sorry for your family loss.. It Is hard to give up precious people who pour so much love into our lives. Praying for your family.
Thank you so so much!
Your post made me cry. I am still struggling with grief from a loss and an illness in the family also. Thank you for your words. I need to read John 16 and let those words sink into my heart. Sometimes life is just so much to handle. So hard to handle. But how wonderful to know where your grandfather is, that he is reunited with your grandmother and in the arms of Jesus. I cannot imagine NOT having that guarantee and losing someone. Thank you for sharing. I am so sorry for your loss.
Oh my goodness, so sorry to hear this. I hope this was an encouragement, I will be praying for you!
Andrea … I commented on your video this morning on youtube, I love that you put this scripture here on the blog.. I can so relate to what the scripture is saying about JOY. June of 2019 I lost my sister then 5 weeks later I lost my husband. Sometime between those 2 loses I started having different messages coming across my path about JOY, & for the past 14 months since losing my husband I am continually seeing messages cross my path about JOY!! I really need to read John 16 … thank you so much for one more message that has now crossed my path about JOY!!
God bless you Andrea … I am praying for your family ~ Michele
Yes, I am so very sorry to hear this, prayers for you as well!
So moved by your video and post. Deeply sorry for your family’s loss. Your grandpa sounds wonderful. It sounds like he had a life filled with so much love. In the end, that’s the most all of us hope for. So blessed! Will be praying the Lord continues to hold you and your family close til the pain lessens. Much love sent your way!
He really did, thank you so much for your encouragement and prayers!
Today is the second anniversary of my daughter departure. We are learning to live one day at the time.
Life is hard but God is good all the time. We have a granddaughter is 5 years old, and we are trying to have and make good memories.
Today my attitude is Easter Sunday not Good Friday.
Very sorry for your loss. Prayer for all.
I am so so sorry to hear this, praying for strength for you as well!
Thank you for sharing some of your precious memories of your grandfather. I’m so thankful for the hope we have in Christ. I’ll be praying that you and your family can rejoice in hope (Romans 12:12) even in your sorrow.
Thank you so much!
One loss never occurs. When we lose someone all the loses of the past join that sorrow. Yet, God is gracious with His love! This community you have built lifts you up and wraps our arms around you! Group hug!
Yes, you all have been so so encouraging to me! Thank you so much ❤️
Dear Andrea, my heart hurts for you! I know you will do this anyway, but please give your Mom some special love moments, losing a parent is a huge loss! My Mother passed at age 64 right after Christmas in 1999. I still think of her and miss her daily. Your Mom is going to need you. I miss my grandparents too, but we will see them again. Share your memories with your children they will love hearing about when you were little. Prayers from me for you and your family.
Oh my goodness, I am so sorry to hear that. I will be praying for strength for you! Thank you for your sweet words of encouragement!
What a wonderful post! To share your memories of your Grandpa, comforting Bible verses, but most of all the hope we have in heaven when we accept Jesus Christ! How wonderful! May God wrap His everloving arms around your familyand comfort you as you mourn your loss! Praying for you.
Thank you so much and thank you for the prayers!
So very sorry for your loss. I’ve been in your place and you will think of him every day. God is good and will give you strength to go on. Blessings to you and your family.
Thank you so much!
Lifting you sweet Andrea, your beloved family and most especially your dear mom to our Heavenly Father, for His Comforting Arms to hold you all as you each press through this time, day by day with moments in reflection of a life well lived, your grandpa, great grandpa, and your mom’s father. Thanking The Father as His Word, Strength, His Unfailing Love and Promises Cover each and all you in this time of loss. Knowing in His Comfort and Joy, he is in your future, tender hugs and Abiding love to all♡♡♡
Thank you so much, my mom needs the prayers and her brothers. We were so blessed to have known him!
Andrea I’m so sorry for your loss. I will be praying for your family especially your mom. Thank God for a hope. It’s always great to reflect back at your life experiences especially those that have made a big impact. I’m a grandparent and this will help me make more memories with my grands. God bless
Oh my goodness, thank you. I am sure your grandchildren will cherish and love those happy memories you are making too!
I am so sorry for your loss. I lost my Daddy in 2000 and a couple of days after the funeral, the big board at our Church (that I had to pass everyday to get home) had a saying on it that said: “When good men die, their goodness does not perish”. That was such a comfort to see each day as I went home. My prayers are with you and your family.
Oh my goodness, how encouraging! So happy you had that! Thank you for your prayers!
I am praying for you, Andrea. Grandparents hold such a special place in our hearts! It sounds like you were blessed to have a grandpa that loved you. Much prayers!
Yes, I loved him so much, such a special man. Thank you!!
Dear Andrea I so agree with all the sweet thoughts above your grandpa was a special man and It’s evident your love for him runs very deep. One thing I heard that helped me through the loss of my parents was to take at least one element of our loved ones life and in their memories try to mirror that in your life to honor them. Hugs and prayers for your sweet family and especially your Mom
In His love
That is an amazing idea, thank you so much and thank you for your prayers as well ❤️❤️
I’m so sorry for your loss! My grandfather also passed away earlier this week. It’s such a comfort and brings so much peace knowing that he lived a long, happy life and is now at home in the arms of the Lord. Even so, it is incredibly sad losing him. I’m praying for you and your family during this difficult time and completely understand what you are going through.
I am so sorry to hear this, I will be praying for strength for you as well ❤️
This brought tears to my eyes.
I am sorry, I hope it was encouraging as well though!
Andrea, I have enjoyed your Youtube channel for some time. I want you to know that you are a beacon of light that is welcoming just now.
I am sorry to hear of the loss of your grandfather. Grandparents are very special! I have very fond memories of mine as well. I wrote a book about childhood memories with mine and how their godly influence shaped my life.
God bless you as you continue to share your gifts and talents with others.
Thank you for your very kind words, they are so encouraging to me. That is a wonderful idea to write a book as well, thank you!