Mark Hall, the leader of Casting Crowns, wrote a great book called "Lifestories". In the chapter "Love Them Like Jesus", Mark writes about several boys in his youth group dealing with the death of their friend's father. They had no idea what to say to their grieving friend. Mark gave them a simple yet powerful suggestion:
"Guys, you've just got to go love him," I said. "Don't think you have to have all the answers. You don't have to make some great spiritual pronouncement when you see him. You just have to be there for him and tell him you're sorry for what happened to his daddy and that you love him. And then you just hang out with him. You've just got to love him like Jesus-love him like He would, and love him to Jesus."
Later in the chapter Mark writes:
"All of the self-induced burden to make everything better creates a fear that causes us to pull away from our hurting friends. We heap all the pressure on ourselves. This is true even in a friendship between believers because we always want to have a spiritual answer for everything. We want to have the bow tied at the end. We want the quick resolution and immediate assurance that everything is going to be fine. Guess what? Sometimes it's not just fine. Sometimes you don't understand what's going on, and you're not going to know for a while, if at all."
"I had learned during a few such scenarios that there is really nothing to say. But there is something to do."
What should we DO when someone we know and love is grieving?
"You don't need the answers to all of life's questions. Just know that He loves them and stay by their side. Love them like Jesus."
(Today's post is part of the Blog Carnival hosted by Peter Pollock on "Grief")