As I’ve been walking with God through a season when it seems like everything has changed, it’s been interesting to see how different people respond to me. Some seem to not know what to say, there’s this kind of awkward part of the conversation when we get to my situation and they are uncertain what to say. Then there are others who want to provide a quick fix. They suggest an idea or two and quickly want to change the subject away from this trial. But, for me at least, the hardest group I have found to be around are those who want to be my coach. They feel they know the ideas and have no hesitancy in offering the perfect solution.
To be honest it’s hard to hear any of these voices in this particular season. Although I’m sure people are just trying to help. So I thought I’d blog about what is most helpful for me right now and see if you agree or have a different perspective. Here’s what is most helpful for me right now – I appreciate the friends that just simply sit with me in this situation and just express care without trying to fix. They ask how I’m doing and what they can pray for. They check in regularly just to let me know that I’m not alone. That’s what I find most helpful right now.
The reality of my present situation is this – there isn’t a quick fix right now, but there is a clear message from God to just be still and know He’s God and trust Him in this season. I’m sure what’s next will become clear in time but as I wait for that clarity I’m learning a different dimension to what it means to live by faith.
So as I write this blog I think back to all the times I’ve been with people going through trials. I have been that guy that wants to give some perfect word that soothes their souls. I’ve also been the guy who has the answers and is free with my coaching advice. Now I feel embarrassed at my lack of insight into the condition of their souls and for not giving much thought to what they need rather than what I think I should say. I’ve been thinking about this verse a lot – James 1:19 – “Know this, my beloved brothers: let every person be quick to hear, slow to speak, slow to anger”
If there is one thing I’ve learned in this season of trial it’s that I really appreciate the love and support of those who are just present with me. They aren’t under the impression they need to fix or change my situation. They aren’t minimizing my grief that day. They are not pulling away because to be around me is just too awkward right now. They are present – they express care – they pray and they express love and support.
That’s what I find most helpful right now – if you are going through a trial – do you have friends around you that are present with you? I really pray you do.