Sunday, August 30, 2009

Part Two - How Can a Friend Come Alongside You in Grief?

How Can a Friend Come Alongside You in Grief?
Part Two

Part Two
of my letter to Vicki about how to help us grieving parents in our grief:

Dearest Vicki, (continued)

…That is why I thank you so much, because

your tenderness is a rare “commodity” in this world, even in this Christian-world, believe-it-or-not!

I think many of our churches have dished out too much “prosperity gospel,” so that when someone IS completely flat on his/her back, the spoon-fed Christians get intimidated with the lack of “quick success” out from under the turmoil.

So they choose to get mad at us victims instead of reaching out to love us "in it"!

I think they want us to hurry up and get over our grief so THEY won’t have to feel bad. AND if we would hurry up and get over it, THEY could continue to tell themselves,
“Yup, there’s Victory in Jesus; he really is an insurance policy for having-a-life-that-is-always-‘peachy-keen’!”

Hebrews 11* makes it clear that ALL those wonderful children of the faith, Noah, Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, Joseph, Moses, etc. (despite the fact that they were the devoted, faithful followers of God here on this earth)

1) "did not receive the things promised" this side of Heaven,

2) but "they only saw them and welcomed them from a distance . . .

3) (while) they were longing for a better country -- a heavenly one."

That "always-peachy-keen-life" expectation some have is downright cult-like thinking because our Lord warned many times that

1) We will suffer,

2) We will have trouble here, **

3) We are to fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith,

But like Him we can endure our cross (giving a slight clue, that yes it will be painful, very painful), while

5) We are to hold on to the joy that will come – some day. ***

(Sorry, thanks for letting me “preach-it-sister!”)

So, Vicki, please rest assured, you do not have any of those toxic features to your comfort:

1) You are not cold-hearted toward us nor our precious child,

2) You are not crass regarding our child who is very near and dear to our hearts,

3) And you are well aware that there's a lot in a grieving-mother's-world that you would have no way of understanding without going through it yourself (God forbid!).

4) That’s very healthy of you in my opinion, that you are well aware of your limitations in the situation,

5) YET you don't let those limitations intimidate you into silence;

6) You just love-us-where-we-are, pray for us, then reach out and lovingly touch us in our pain.

You have no idea how incredibly healing that touching-us-in-our-pain is.

It’s like we grieving parents are living in a lepers’ colony of sorts, and someone lovingly dares to enter our colony, look into our eyes, see our brokenness, yet reaches out and touches us anyway.

It is an unbelievable phenomenon that when a person lovingly risks touching my pain, as heavy as my load is, it feels like that person has reached out and helped me carry the pain awhile. It actually lifts my load awhile! It has that kind of impact.

So thank you again, sweet sister! Much love and thankfulness for you!


**John 16:33

33"I have told you these things, so that in Me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world."

*Hebrews 11:13-14, 16

13All these were still living by faith when they died. They did not receive the things promised; they only saw them and welcomed them from a distance. And they admitted that they were aliens and strangers on earth.

14People who say such things show that they are looking for a country of their own….

16Instead, they were longing for a better country—a heavenly one. Therefore God is not ashamed to be called their God, for He has prepared a city for them.

***Hebrews 12:1-3

1Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles, and let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us.

2Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy set before Him endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.

3Consider Him who endured such opposition from sinful men, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart.

In Honor Of
Another Precious
"Twitter Friend"
who ministers to me

Victoria Thomas Gaines
Vicki's Blog: "Light for the Writer's Soul"


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