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  • Writer's pictureAshley Gray

Cognitive Dissonance and Death

What does it mean to love Christ but feel a cognitive dissonance of understanding his goodness when someone you love has died? My Aunt died unexpectedly last week. My sister-from-another-mister lost her daddy. My friend died today after a fierce battle with stomach cancer. These deaths have me examining this deep feeling of dissonance.


Here’s the thing… I believe God is good. I engage in the call and response tradition where we exclaim that God is good all the time and all the time God is good. And I typically believe it. I sat in two funerals just last week where we were engaged in high praise because we were told to do so. I guess I’m wondering what it looks like when you have the capacity to believe that God is good and struggle to feel like maybe this one time, God wasn’t thinking about my perception of “good”. Something in my Christian upbringing makes it hard to even write this, but I’d be less called and less genuine had I not.


I believe that God is good, but I’m struggling to sing the songs of high praise and engage in the call and response because I think God knows this hurts me. I believe God is good enough to understand that this hurts. What does it mean to allow a death to hurt? Because that’s where I am. It hurts like hell and perhaps God is still good.




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