Empathy. Comfort. Care. Concern. All human beings need understanding. Oftentimes, listening is the best gift you can offer.
Prayer with another is also comforting. The words aren’t important, just sit together, pray silently, read an inspirational poem or scripture, have some tea and cookies.
Solitude makes depression and worry so much worse for people. Email and a card in the mail do when you aren’t close in distance, but if you are – stop by with a bouquet of yellow flowers, a book your friend might enjoy, but DO stop by.
Oftentimes we are given a scripture or thought to spend time figuring out. Maybe it was easily understandable — but other times, we can’t make heads or tails over the meaning, or if it’s even a message for US.
This is when spiritual discernment steps in. Find a trusted advisor, someone who is spiritually sound, they do not have to be a minister, sometimes a good friend can help sort it out WITH you, not for you.
As a wise friend recently told me — it’s my seeking/understanding that matters most. But sometimes we all need a little help!
Proverbs 2:3-5 Yes, if you want better insight and discernment, and are searching for them as you would for lost money or hidden treasure, then wisdom will be given you and knowledge of God himself; you will soon learn the importance of reverence for the Lord and of trusting him.
2 Peter 3 reminds us that all happens in God’s time; not ours.
Paul was in jail during this time, he remembers people in his prayers, he thanks God for his situation (do we EVER do that???) and he encourages others.
Until recently I haven’t grasped the concept of thanking God for the hard times. However, I see that gratitude isn’t just for the “good stuff,” if that were true, we’d only be happy when life was happy. Even in our deepest sorrow or pain, God is there, his desire is that we lean on him. By doing so, a small piece inside our heart grows; pushing the sorrow and pain out. How can we possibly have room for love and happiness if our heart is stone cold and black? We can’t. That’s where being grateful for all of it, comes into play.
It’s not easy to be grateful for the pain. I know. But if it brings us out of something harsh and cold into the loving arms of Jesus, what better path to love?
Be a blessing. Be blessed.
PS “The Pieces” is not currently available, it is going through a 2nd editing. It will be back on the shelves at Amazon by November 5, 2015.
Oftentimes (usually) we are unaware of those who pray for us, or our loved ones – due to the many prayer circles we belong to and friendships we have (and those of the people we know and don’t know).
I received in my email today, a note from someone I don’t know – that encouraged me with this scripture: “I have loved you, with an everlasting love and I am constant in my affection for you.” Jeremiah 31: 3
The timing of this beautiful quote couldn’t have come at a better time, the irony (although this begs to God’s timing, not ours) is that it had been sitting in my email box since September 11th.
Do not be glib when you say you will pray for someone; make an effort. Pray with intention. You may not know what they need (and probably you don’t!), but God does. Let prayer become as natural to you as breathing.
If you grew up in a family that attended church every Sunday, you will recall in your childhood, having to memorize bible verses. Granted, they start you out with very short sentences when you are small, but by the time junior high rolls around, you are memorizing paragraphs plus having to remember all the verses you’ve already memorized.
Now at age 51, I realize that my memory is pretty much shot and were it not for the scraps of paper I keep, I wouldn’t know any bible verses!
Your fathers and their prophets are now long dead, but remember the lesson they learned, that God’s Word endures!
You will never be able to eat solid spiritual food and understand the deeper things of God’s Word until you become better Christians and learn right from wrong by practicing doing right.
We can adhere to God’s word without having to memorize scripture, but it sure comes in handy in times of need.
We are complicated beings. If you have faith in God, you have one less stressor than most, and it’s a great comfort when in pain; emotional or physical.
However, it’s important we know when to care for ourselves, by letting others know — hey we need a break, or a nap, or I just require an hour to read.
Other human beings generally can’t read our minds, so if we don’t ask for what we need, they simply will not know.
Be kind to yourself. Do some deep breathing, stretch, nap, read a book, decompress.
Yes indeed, it is good when you truly obey our Lord’s command, “You must love and help your neighbors just as much as you love and take care of yourself.”
When we are fearful, feeling alone, unsure or a myriad of other emotions that make us want to crawl into a cave or throw a blanket over our heads, what better time than to seek refuge from your heavenly Father? He is better than a cold, dark cave, and brings light back into our heart so we can cast off the heavy blanket.
Psalm 62:8 Trust in him at all times, you people; pour out your hearts to him, for God is our refuge.
The eternal God is your refuge, and underneath are the everlasting arms.
May the Lord
repay you for what you have done. May you be richly rewarded by the Lord
, the God of Israel, under whose wings you have come to take refuge.”