There are many types of grief beyond the death of a loved one, and we’ll briefly touch on a few types of these as we explore how medical professionals realize that faith and spirituality can be helpful in easing grief.
There are many types of grief. We don’t have the space here to cover them all, but we’ll touch on a few, as outlined by the website What’s Your Grief.
While there is no type of so-called normal, typical or average grief, for lack of a better term, we will call it “standard grief.” This is the reaction to the loss of someone or something.
Another type is called “anticipatory grief,” which is when you are suffering anxiety over the imminent loss of someone or something that hasn’t happened yet.
Another very common type is “delayed grief” which occurs when grieving is suppressed and occurs at a time later than is typical.
There is “chronic grief” and “prolonged grief,” both of which last over a long time, the latter of which impairs daily function and may bring on suicidal tendencies.
Another type is “masked grief” in which the individual changes their behavior or physical symptoms manifest as a result of the grieving process.
“Traumatic grief” is where the level of distress impairs daily functioning and the individual may have an amplified reaction to the event that caused the grief, almost as in a posttraumatic stress (PTSD) type of way.
According to researchers from Harvard Medical School, faith, religion and spirituality can ease grief, especially that which comes from loss.
In a special health report from Harvard Medical School called Coping with Grief and Loss, the medical professionals said people who are grieving “find that spirituality or organized religion is a source of great solace.”
“Attending religious services can link you with a well-defined community primed to offer help of all sorts,” the Harvard authors wrote. “And a kind word, a willing listener, a shared meal, and any number of large and small acts of assistance help keep people afloat and ease their distress after a death.”
The researchers advised: “If prayer heartens or sustains you, set aside time for it. Read spiritual texts that you find comforting, attend services, and share your circumstances with a religious leader who can help place the death in the context of your faith.”
Here are eight Bible verses pertaining to grief that many people find comfort in. The first two verses are from the words of Jesus:
“Blessed are those who mourn, for they will be comforted.”
– Matthew 5:4
“So with you: Now is your time of grief, but I will see you again and you will rejoice, and no one will take away your joy.”
– John 16:22
“He will wipe away every tear from their eyes, and death shall be no more, neither shall there be mourning, nor crying, nor pain anymore, for the former things have passed away.”
– Revelation 21:4
“He heals the brokenhearted and binds up their wounds.”
– Psalm 147:3
“The Lord is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit.”
– Psalm 34:18
“Cast your cares on the Lord and He will sustain you; He will never let the righteous fall.”
– Psalm 55:22
“For no one is cast off by the Lord forever. Though he brings grief, he will show compassion, so great is his unfailing love. For he does not willingly bring affliction or grief to anyone.”
– Lamentations 3:31-33
“For I am sure that neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers, nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.”
– Romans 8:38-39