I recently picked up Ken's copy of Jay Adams' classic pastoral counseling book, "Shepherding God's Flock," and read the section on grief counseling. Adams sees grieving people as ministry opportunities. I agree - it is important for pastors to minister to people who are grieving, especially since it is something that everyone will experience. We won't all get married, or have children, etc. ... but grief necessarily is something that we all go through.
Today I talked with a friend who is still grieving over the loss of her father several years after his death, mostly because she still has issues with him that she needs to forgive. I suppose forgiving someone who is dead is mostly for your own benefit - to eliminate bitterness which can eat away at your soul. My friend is certainly struggling; she cannot mention the subject without tears.
I wonder if Ken and I will be able to counsel people who are mourning the loss of a loved one - or even more complicated situations like this one. (By the way, incidentally - according to Jay Adams, the "Pastor's Wife" is not an office, and should not be treated as such. Thank you. How liberating.)