Love Notes from Abby- The Best Gift You Can Give A Grieving Friend
Good Monday morning.
Does anyone out here love Monday as much as I do?
I feel like it's this blank sheet of paper that just has all of these unlimited possibilities, and so I really enjoy the Monday. I hope that you feel the same way too as you go about tackling your day.
This past weekend I was visited by a friend who I hadn't seen in a long, long time, and it wasn't under the best circumstances. Two months ago she lost her husband to cancer. She's a very young widow. She is in the acute stage of grief.
She is handling it beautifully, but we all know that even when you handle grief well, it's hard. It is very hard.
And so today I thought, what if we chat about how to help someone who is grieving?
As a society, I truly believe that we do not deal with grief and death well. Meaning that it makes everybody so uncomfortable.
When we see someone in pain and there's nothing we can do about it, our heart breaks for them, so then we do one of two things.
We either fill all the silent spaces with all the words we mean so sincerely and yet it still doesn't fix anything.
Or we're in the opposite camp where we see someone hurting, and goodness gracious, heaven forbid that they cry and we have to sit there and watch them cry and it makes us uncomfortable. So then we just avoid it altogether.
To be honest, I've been in both camps myself, but after the wreck I had a better idea of what I needed and what I wanted from people who were in my life.
The fact is there are no words, there are no words that you can say to anyone that is going to abate or alleviate their pain.
And so whenever it's no longer your responsibility to fix it or make it better, I think it takes a lot of the pressure off.
The other thing is that tears are absolutely a normal and needed part of the grieving process, but just because your friend that's grieving is crying, doesn't mean that you have to cry.
And it doesn't mean that you have to say, oh, are you okay?
They're not. They're not okay in that moment, they will be okay.
Tears are just a release sometimes, not just sometimes.
It is perfectly acceptable to sit in silence while your friend cries or talks or doesn't talk. We don't have to fill the space.
It was such a great reminder of when we find ourselves in situations where those around us are grieving, people appreciate when you just show up, when you're willing to sit in the ashes, when you don't have all the answers.
That is the charge today, that you will reach out to your friend in pain and that you will be the hands and feet of Jesus in this sense that you will be there and you will listen.
My prayer is that God will put people in your life that you can minister and serve.
Your ear will be one of the greatest gifts you can give them.
All right, my friends go take on your day.
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