A Father’s Grief



“Oh, how can I give you up, Israel? How can I let you go?”  — Hosea 11:8



Yesterday, I watched as a grieving father stood before television cameras to share his heartbreak over the loss of his wife, two daughters and mother-in-law. An F-18 fighter jet had crashed into the home of this man, instantly killing his entire family.



Dong Yun Yoon held no bitterness for the pilot—he called him a “hero serving his country.” He said his faith left no room for blame or bitterness.



With trembling voice this emotionally bankrupt father said, “I know others have faced things much worse than I. I want to know how they got through it. What is the answer?”



As his pastor stood by his side I realized that I was witnessing the most broken man I had ever seen. Where is his answer? Does God really know what he is going through? Yes, He does!



In Genesis, God created a world who turned its back on Him—loss! Through Abraham, God chose a people who eventually turned their back on Him—loss! You can see the reluctance of God to give up on His people in Hosea. He questions, “How can I give you up—how can I let you go?”



In the Gospels, God sends His Son to reconcile a lost, sinful and rebellious world to Himself—loss! God’s heartbreak and grief are seen in words and actions as Jesus goes to the cross: “O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, the city that kills the prophets and stones God’s messengers! How often I have wanted to gather your children together as a hen protects her chicks beneath her wings, but you wouldn’t let me” (Matthew 23:37).



The broken heart of the Father sent Jesus to the cross. “For God loved the world so much that he gave his one and only Son, so that everyone who believes in him will not perish but have eternal life. God sent his Son into the world not to judge the world, but to save the world through him” (John 3:16-17).



Yesterday, my heart was grieving for Dong Yun Yoon. At the same time, I caught a miniscule glimpse of the grief of my Heavenly Father for a world lost in sin. I broke His heart…we broke His heart; but God loves us so much that He will not give up on us! He will not let us go!



I want to yield to Him all that I have, all that I am, all that I could ever hope to be. My Father grieves…I will give!


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