Just after Mickey passed away, Mr. S and I went to stay with my parents. We couldn’t handle being in the apartment we’d been a family in, without him.
I’m so thankful for that time, almost 6 months of it, with my parents. Looking back, I can see the protection they gave us: intentionally or not, it was there. They shielded us from callers and visitors, they respected our need for quiet, or laughter, for tears or smiles. They simply followed our lead. They allowed us to grieve and rest, not to worry about anything but walking through the valley.
This was a precious gift, that I still treasure in my heart. I’d like to share with you what I see, looking back, as a good example of how to help others cope with stressful situations, to allow them to rest:
1) Be caring! They cared, their hearts were open to the need of the moment, and provided.
2) Follow the Leader! They followed our lead, and didn’t pressure us.
3) Affirm and encourage! They acknowledged our pain, and encouraged us to continue living.
4) Respect the Overwhelmed Heart! They asked us if we were available for visitors or phone calls, even if sitting right there doing nothing.
5) Give the gift of touch! They hugged us frequently.
6) Acknowledge the Process! They allowed our grief to develop and process on it’s own time frame.
Looking at those and I can tell you, they are great reminders for those IN the trials and those WATCHING the trials.
But let all who take refuge in You be glad,
Let them ever sing for joy;
And may You shelter them,
That those who love Your name may exult in You.
Your task: Broaden your idea of what helping others means to you. Be willing to step up and help out in bigger ways, as the Lord leads. If your heart is willing, He’ll bring those chances to you, as needed.