How to Help Those Who Are Grieving
By Greg Sanders
Saying nothing is far better than saying something that is hurtful. Years of ministry have taught me that people often say hurtful things while trying to console others. The statements they intend to be helpful end up adding insult to the present injury. When you don’t know what to say, understand that saying nothing is actually an acceptable and preferable action.
In Job 2:13, Job’s friends came to comfort him in his grief. The bible says, “Then they sat on the ground with him for seven days and nights. No one said a word to Job, for they saw that his suffering was too great for words.”
Job’s friends started ministering to him in the best way possible. They went to him and they stayed with him. This is what many call the ministry of presence. It is the gift of just being with someone while they are hurting. Later on Job’s friends did speak to him and that is where their help turned into hurt. When they spoke to him, they said the wrong thing. They assumed facts that were not accurate and assumed that their perspective was correct. Job’s friends did great at bringing comfort to him until they opened their mouth.
Realize that your presence is the best thing you can offer to those who are grieving. People do not need your rehearsed remarks or standard sayings. They just need you.
Today’s Challenge: When you have the opportunity to minister to someone who is grieving, reject the pressure to just say something and focus on just being there for them.