So much loss. So much pain. So many questions.
Lately I’ve spent a lot of time considering the incredible pain of suffering. There isn’t one of us who isn’t familiar with grief. We all experience tragedy.
Betrayal of a friend.
Loss of a job or home.
Death of a loved one.
It’s in those moments of raw brokenness that God shows up big.
Yet He made us relational beings. We need each other to get to the other side. So what do we do when a sister is grieving? How do we love her through it?
The process is unique for each of us, although the emotions will cycle through in turn. Since people handle tragedy differently, there is no blanket response for comforting a hurting sister.
We must learn to be sensitive to her needs in the moment.
- She may need physical help, such as with meals, housework, transportation or responsibilities that are difficult to manage emotionally.
- She may need understanding, the empathy of someone who has experienced similar grief and can identify with her situation.
- She may need your touch, arms to hold her while she cries, or simply the grip of your fingers around hers.
- She may just need you to be there, the simple gift of your quiet presence when words cannot penetrate the pain.
- She may need an attentive ear, someone to listen while she pours out her heart and tries to sort through her emotions.
- She may need encouragement, someone to speak truth to her heart or give advice as she attempts to move forward.
- She may need some space, time alone to digest the tragedy and make sense of it all, a safe place where there are no demands on her time or attention.
Many times after a tragedy, we long to help but just don’t know what to do. The closeness of the relationship will affects our decision on how to love her during this time. With the discernment of the Holy Spirit, we can provide what she needs.
But there is one thing that all of us can do. Any time. Any place. For any sister.
We can pray for her.
When we don’t know how to help a grieving sister, the first thing to do is pray. We ask God to provide for her needs. To comfort her. To strengthen her.
And we ask God to show us how we can be a blessing in her life.
Because she needs us.
And we need her.