One of the deepest books that I have read was C S Lewis’ “A Grief Observed,” which he recorded after his wife, Joy, died. Lewis first wrote it under a pseudonym, --“N W Clerk,” as in, “no one knows who wrote it;” and referred to her as “H,” rather than by her real name, knowing that Christians would not understand. . After my father died, his descriptions of grief resounded with me better. Like Rachel Held Evans about Christian fundamentalism in her books, he was devastatingly truthful in this one:
“Talk to me about the truth of religion and I’ll listen gladly. Talk to me about the duty of religion and I’ll listen submissively. But don’t come talking to me about the consolations of religion or I shall suspect that you don’t understand.”
“No one ever told me that grief felt so like fear. I am not afraid, but the sensation is like being afraid. The same fluttering in the stomach, the same restlessness, the yawning. I keep on swallowing.
"At other times it feels like being mildly drunk, or concussed. There is a sort of invisible blanket between the world and me. I find it hard to take in what anyone says. Or perhaps, hard to want to take it in. It is so uninteresting. Yet I want the others to be about me. I dread the moments when the house is empty. If only they would talk to one another and not to me.
“When you are happy, so happy you have no sense of needing Him, so happy that you are tempted to feel His claims upon you as an interruption, if you remember yourself and turn to Him with gratitude and praise, you will be — or so it feels— welcomed with open arms. But go to Him when your need is desperate, when all other help is vain, and what do you find? A door slammed in your face, and a sound of bolting and double bolting on the inside. After that, silence.
“Her absence is like the sky, spread over everything.”
“Not that I am (I think) in much danger of ceasing to believe in God. The real danger is of coming to believe such dreadful things about Him. The conclusion I dread is not ‘So there’s no God after all,’ but 'So this is what God’s really like. Deceive yourself no longer.”
Here’s a quote from Rachel Held Evans on grief:
“Walking with someone through grief, or through the process of reconciliation, requires patience, presence, and a willingness to wander, to take the scenic route. But the modern-day church doesn’t like to wander or wait. The modern-day church likes results. Convinced the gospel is a product we’ve got to sell to an increasingly shrinking market, we like our people to function as walking advertisements: happy, put-together, finished - proof that this Jesus stuff WORKS!”
I don’t think that anyone here is trying to approach things from this point of view–but this is a temptation in the modern church. I don’t know the answers to all this.
In medicine, we are taught to treat everything. However, as patients have taught me and as @jpm would likely agree, we don’t want to stop someone’s tears, as long as they are healthy.
Job and Ecclesiastes would hint that there is no satisfying answer to grief and loss.