The death of John the Baptist

Jesus weepsOn Sunday from the Gospel of Matthew, chapter 14 vs 13-21, the first line read “When Jesus heard of the death of John the Baptist, he withdrew in a boat to a deserted place by himself.”

I  saw the Lord’s grief at the death of his cousin John when I read those words, who was also His messenger, the one who had prepared the way before Him. Given my own grief over the death of Christine, I recognized the signs of pain and sorrow. I hadn’t thought about Jesus grieving before. Of course, I heard the Gospel readings for years how Jesus had wept at the death of Lazarus. But this verse touched me more than the verse about Lazarus’ death. Grieving has been so much in the forefront of my life lately. I know that after the death of someone you love, you want to go away and be alone for a while. It must be a physical need.

But Jesus didn’t stay alone for long. People came to Him when they found out where He had gone. He didn’t send them away. “His heart was moved with pity for them, and He cured their sick.” Perhaps it is time for me to leave the grief behind, to go on with my life. How do I do that? I have been trying to put it behind me, for I know the sadness is not so much for Christine, but for myself – for the lonely nights without her voice, for the dreams we might have shared, and the times we might have spent together. I am so grateful that I have known her, and even if for a short time, Christine was my friend, the person who knew me best. I hope and pray that I will see her again.

May God grant my sister Christine peace and happiness in the company of our family forever! May God guide my way so that when my days are over, I may join them and be with them forever!