State of Mind – Part 2: Grief

State of Mind – Part 2: Grief

State of Mind – Part 2
November 6-7, 2021
Steve Tanner

John 11:1-44

“Morning, noon, and night I cry out in my distress, and the Lord hears my voice.” 
Psalm 55:17 (p.438)

“’(Jesus)… My soul is crushed with grief to the point of death.’” Matthew 26:38a (p.757)

Series Memory Verse: ”You must love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul, all your mind, and all your strength.” Mark 12:30 (p.773)

  • Healthy Grief Brings Emotional Healing
  1. Allow yourself to grieve losses.

“When Jesus saw her weeping and saw the other people wailing with her, a deep anger welled up within him, and he was deeply troubled. ‘Where have you put him?’ he asked them. They told him, ‘Lord, come and see.’ Then Jesus wept.” John 11:33-35 (p.820)

  1. Release the grip grief has on you. (Speak it, admit it)

“Martha said to Jesus, ‘Lord, if only you had been here, my brother would not have died…’ When Mary arrived and saw Jesus, she fell at his feet and said, ‘Lord, if only you had been here, my brother would not have died.’” John 11:21, 32 (p.820)

“Give all your worries and cares to God, for he cares about you.” 1 Peter 5:7 (p.937)

  1. Depend on Jesus for emotional freedom.

“Then Jesus shouted, ‘Lazarus, come out!’ And the dead man came out, his hands and feet bound in graveclothes, his face wrapped in a headcloth. Jesus told them, ‘Unwrap him and let him go!’” John 11:43-44 (p.820)

“The Spirit of God, who raised Jesus from the dead, lives in you.” Romans 8:11a (p.862)

“God blesses those who mourn, for they will be comforted.” Matthew 5:4 (p.736)

“You have turned my mourning into joyful dancing. You have taken away my clothes of mourning and clothed me with joy, that I might sing praises to you and not be silent. O Lord my God, I will give you thanks forever!Psalm 30:11–12 (p.426)

My Next Step This Week: ____ I will speak my grief to God in prayer as I ask Him to help me live in the freedom that comes from healthy grieving.

Note: Steve’s guest today was Bobbie Rill of

Discussion/Groups Guide
Weekend Talk of November 6-7, 2021
State of Mind – Part 2: Grief

Life Groups use this guide in their discussion and study of the Weekend Talk. Use this also as a discussion guide with your family and friends.

Find out more about Groups (in person and online) at

Conversation Starters

  • What is the saddest film you have ever seen and what made it sad for you?
  • Have you ever been to a funeral that seemed more like a wedding than a funeral? Is that OK?
  • Grief is inevitable. We are all touched by it at some time or another—either our grief or the grief of someone close to us. Talk about how this relates to the oft-spoken ACS (Alive Church Saying): You’re either in a crisis, headed towards a crisis, or coming out of a crisis.
  • How have you handled grief in your life?

Quick Review

Looking back at your Talk Notes, was there anything you heard in the service that stood out, challenged, or maybe even confused you?

Discussion Starters from the Weekend Talk

Refer to the Talk Notes and Bible verses from the Talk Notes.

This week’s One Thing: The key principle that Pastor Steve Tanner emphasized is:

Healthy Grief Brings Emotional Healing.

  • Series Memory Verse: Mark 12:30 (p.773)
    • Loving God with our heart, soul, mind, and strength implies being healthy in those areas of life. Our whole self.
  • Background: John 11:1-44 (p.820)
    • Have you heard this story before? Did anything new stand out this time?
    • What did Jesus say was the reason for Lazarus’ death?
  • What crucial claim did Jesus make about Himself in this passage? (See vs 25-26)

Steve encouraged us to focus on 3 Keys to healthy grief:

  1. Allow yourself to grieve losses. (John 11:33-35 (p.820))
    • Steve mentioned several unhealthy ways in which we deal with grief: stuff it; seek to escape it; wallow in it; ignore it. Have you done that or seen that happen?
    • As a parent or guardian, how have you helped your children face grief?
      • How much of your approach to grief impacts the children closest to you?
  2. Release the grip grief has on you. (Speak it, admit it). (John 11:17-22, 32-33 (p.820); 1 Peter 5:7 (p.937))
    • How were Martha’s and Mary’s reactions the same and different when they spoke to Jesus?
    • Bobbie Rill* is the grief expert we had shared within the Talk. She said: “Grief is an expression of your emotions. It is not a barometer of your spirituality.”
      • What are your thoughts about this statement?
    • Who has been a trusted person to whom you could speak when you have faced grief?
  3. Depend on Jesus for emotional freedom. (John 11:43-44 (p.820); Romans 8:11a (p.862); Matthew 5:4 (p.736))
    • When does the Power of God seem most real to you?
    • How have you experienced comfort in the midst of mourning/grieving?
    • Have you helped someone else through their grief? What did you do? What did you learn?
  • Read Psalms 30:11-12 (p.426)
    • When have you experienced your “mourning turning into dancing?”
    • Have you ever felt guilty because you experienced happiness after an experience of intense grief?

Digging Deeper (usually to study on your own)

  • Here are a couple of definitions of grief.
    • Grief is intense emotional suffering caused by a loss.
    • Grief is the painful emotion of sorrow caused by the loss or impending loss of anyone or anything that has deep meaning to you.
  • Look up and pray through the following verses that speak to grief and sorrow. Just read the verse back to God and then say whatever comes to mind related to the words of the passage. By doing so, you are praying scripture and getting God’s Word into your mind and heart.
    • Psalm 34:18 (p.428)
    • Psalm 31:9 (p.426)
    • Jeremiah 17:14 (p.587)
    • Romans 5:3-5 (p.
    • Psalm 23 (p.423)
    • Nahum 1:7 (p.709)
    • Psalm 57:1 (p.438)
    • Psalm 55:22 (p.438)
    • John 16:33 (p.825)

My Next Step This Week: _____  I will speak my grief to God in prayer as I ask Him to help me live in the freedom that comes from healthy grieving.

Use the link on the app or go to to indicate you are taking this Next Step so that we can pray for you.

Note: Page numbers are from the Alive Church Life Transformation Bible. It is the New Living Translation of the Bible, with many useful tools to help you better understand God’s Word, including our own Alive Church Life Transformation Discipleship Plan. They are available FREE. Let us know if you’d like to have one. We also have a Kids and Spanish Edition of the Bible.

*Bobbie Rill,

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