He waka ia nei i herea. The waka cannot be kept forever.
Rīpeka has graciously shared some of the things her whānau is doing following the death of her father. I also want to acknowledge the survivors of the Mosque attacks who have courageously given their impact statements recently. It is really important to acknowledge grief, to name it, to find appropriate ways to express it. As Rīpeka said, it’s okay to be sad, and it’s important to acknowledge and release grief.
The Bible calls this process 'Lament'. David, who wrote the psalm we heard earlier (Psalm 42:3-5), describes what’s going on inside him and how his life has been impacted. As he pours out his heart, he remembers that God will help him. This grief will not be his whole experience of life.
Grief can take different forms – it doesn’t always involve a death. I know some of you have experienced significant griefs and I do want to acknowledge you today. Others have experienced smaller losses, and certainly, there have been many disappointments this year. Whether big or small, it is good to get in the habit of acknowledging these things in a safe context. And may God bless you as you do.