I’ve been asked a question a few times after the death of Brandon. I’ve recently learned that other family members have been asked the same question. Honestly, I hate this question. Don’t misunderstand, I am not taking offense to the question because the Bible says that Christians are not supposed to be easily offended (I Thes. 13:5). However, I will explain why I hate it so much and also my answer to the question.
The question is this: Is Christ Enough for you? My answer is no. This is my answer whether or not it is the “right” answer or the godliest answer. It is my most honest and transparent answer. I am afraid if more people who have lost loved ones were honest, they would answer the same way that I did, for we were created to want and to need other human beings. I believe by loving others, we are demonstrating our love and gratitude for our Creator.
Back in the beginning of Creation in Genesis 2:18 we see that God said, “It is not good for man to be alone.” Why did God say that? Adam had all the beauty and enjoyment of Eden. He even had continual fellowship with only his Creator God. Was God not good enough for Adam even before the Fall of Man?
In Luke we are commanded to “Love the Lord your God” with all our heart, soul and minds AND “Love your neighbors” (Luke 10:27). That is God giving us the commandment to love others.
In Philippians 1:3-7, Paul expresses his love and thankfulness for his fellow brethren. He prays for them. He expresses that he longs for them and he misses them. He even states, “It is right for me to feel this way about you all, because I hold you in my heart, for you are all partakers with me in grace.”
Here is another great example from Paul in I Thessalonians 2:17. Paul writes, “We were torn away, for a short time in person, not in heart, we endeavored the more eagerly and with great desire to see you face to face.” In verse 19 he even says that in addition to the hope and joy of having Christ return, he is excited that other believers will return with Him! Verse 20 says, “For you (other believers) are our glory and joy.” People gave Paul a great deal of joy!
I think part of the reason we suffer the loss of loved ones on this earth is so that we gain a more heavenly mindset. I have never looked as forward to the New Earth and my home with my Heavenly Father as I have since I lost my son. I have always been excited, but I have not studied Heaven, thought about it as often and really looked forward to Heaven as much as I have in the last four months.
As far as me hating the question, it is simply because I do not believe it is not a fair question to ask. It is almost contemptuous to ask a grieving individual “Is Christ enough to bring you joy or is He not?” Only Adam had the opportunity to live with only God and no other human beings. God created us with the desire to have other human beings. I believe God finds joy when we purely enjoy His creatures that He created in His own image. He created us with a mind, will and emotion to long for those we are not with and in His perfect plan in the longing of loved ones we are pointed back to Christ. I, along with Paul, are “longing for the coming of the Lord AND ALL HIS SAINTS” (I Thes. 3:13). The Bible says in difficult times and in times where we might be tempted to sway in our faith to “encourage one another with these words” (I Thes 4:18).
In conclusion, I do not think it is shameful or wrong to long for loved ones. I do not think it is idolatry to love other human beings. In fact, it is wrong if we do not love others for we were commanded to love and fellowship with other believers. I believe that God created others for our enjoyment and to bring us a taste of the companionship we will experience with other believers in Heaven along with our Heavenly Father.