If ... Then ...
If you return to the Almighty you will be built up;
if you remove injustice far from your tents,
if you lay gold in the dust, and gold of Ophir among the stones of the torrent-bed,
then the Almighty will be your gold and your precious silver.
For then you will delight yourself in the Almighty and lift up your face to God.
You will make your prayer to him, and he will hear you, and you will pay your vows.
(Job 22:23-27 ESV)
Eliphaz the Temanite seems to have the antidote for Job's problems. Don't you just love people that spout formulaic prose to suffering people? There was a time when rules, principles and formulas really seemed to work for me. I had a complex system of principles that I lived by even though I imagined myself to be, generally speaking, led by the Holy Spirit. It is the tension that many of us face when we lean on our own "Christian" understanding of life.
The intense pain of grief can never be eased by rules, principles or formulas. Our mind is not geared to deal with loss because it cannot deal with things that are unfathomable. When the loss of my first wife set in my formulas stopped working - rules are no match for pain because loss is not experienced by the logical part of us. There is no logic to grief. Grief is so irrational. Grieving is an issue of trusting God with our heart and not leaning on our understanding.
Help us Lord today to trust you with all of our heart - even when we grieve.