5 things you can do besides saying that “you’ll pray” ​

5 things you can do besides saying that "you'll pray" ​

Sharing today with you 5 things you can do besides saying that “you’ll pray”

I’ve done it and I’ve also been at the receiving end of it ( a lot lately). When someone is telling you about how they are suffering or hurting and all you can come up with at that moment is “I will pray for you”. If you are part of a Christian community you’ve probably said this a hundred times. That doesn’t seem quite good enough, but it was all you could think of.

As believers in Jesus, we are charged to walk alongside each other in our pain. We are called to mourn with those who mourn (Rom. 12:14). We are to bear one another’s burdens (Gal. 6:2). We are to be compassionate, gentle, and patient with each other (Eph. 4:21 Pet. 3:8). So what else can we do?

Let us actually pray

Let us actually pray. I tried to write down the names of people who needed prayer. I tried to sum them all up in my daily prayers, but I am very guilty of often forgetting. I try to normalize praying as good as I can for my children. We live on a busy road and we often hear the ambulance speeding by, or a fire truck or the police. When we hear the sirens in the distance my 5-year-old and I say a quick prayer. “Lord help them”. So immediate prayer works best for us and I try implement that now in other situations. When talking to someone I offer to pray there and then. It’s funny how many Christians this actually throws off guard. “You mean, right now?” “Yes — absolutely. Let’s pray.” I also pray immediately when I read that someone is asking for prayer or is obviously suffering or going through something rough on social media. It doesn’t have to fancy, God knows that I’m a pretty casual prayer. He just loves us talking to Him.

Actually help

“Can I do something?” …People, in general, don’t want to bother others with their burdens. I’m pretty guilty of that. I don’t want people thinking that I am having a pitty party. But I have learned from a few very good friends of mine who have helped me through a crisis that sometimes, as a friend you just need to take over for a bit. People that are overwhelmed by grief have a hard time asking for help and sometimes don’t even know what they need. Like the “Nike” slogan says it, “just do it”. “Just” drop off that meal.” Just” drop by with flowers, “just” pick up the phone and call them. “Just” drop of some sushi or groceries (my favorite). What you sense they need, just do it.

Express sorrow, shock, and regret.

You must enter into the other person’s experience. Try to imagine how they are feeling. What are they thinking? What choices do they face? What might they be feeling physically? What would it be like to see the world through their eyes? What are their greatest fears?

Let them hurt

It’s hard, we don’t want others to be in pain. It makes us sad, it makes us uncomfortable, we don’t know what to do. But sometimes it is what it is and all they can do in the moment is hurt. You just can’t stop it. Acknowledge the inability of words to truly ease the pain.

Follow up

In dramatic life events, people are usually swamped by people’s offers of help and comforting words. But as time goes on people assume that the person has moved on, but moving on implies that the person is able to. Sometimes they are not. Pure and simple. That’s why it’s important to continue to let them know that you are still there for them. They need time and nobody can tell them how much is enough.

This is my personal opinion as how you can help others besides pray. These are things that I have found helpful and try to do for others as well. I would really appreciate knowing about how people have helped you in the past and what you have taken from it towards helping others yourself.

Be blessed, my friends and try these tips as to the 5 things you can do besides saying that “you’ll pray” ​.

5 things you can do besides saying that "you'll pray" ​
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Grace…I need it.

It has been three weeks since my husband needed to leave our home. It’s been three weeks that I have been trying to figure out how to face the uncertain future.

Yesterday was hard, really hard. The first week after he had left, I spent most of my days crying and praying. Then the crying became less and being mad replaced it, then sad again, then mad. You can maybe imagine the feeling of the rollercoaster emotions going up and down. But yesterday was just darn right hard. I felt sadness, anger, hurt, afraid, irritated. Almost every negative feeling you van have.

I am usually a very calm and a patient mom. I don’t like to yell, I like to take the time to explain to my very active pre-schooler why he needs to this or why he cannot do that. I like to read books written by L.R. Knost and I am in Facebook groups labeled “crunchy christian moms”. I like to call my parenting style “Gentle Christian Parenting”, but yesterday…I was failing. I was missing grace. I yelled, I let my son watch way too much tv, I let him way too much junk and I spent most of the day on my computer. I was trying to avoid my thoughts. Wallowing in self pity.

My thoughts would take me to places where I did not want to be. It put guilt in my mind, even thought it should not be there in these circumstances. It put the belief that no one cared for me, even though I had an army of friends already helping me. It put the feeling of being unloved, what could not be true seeing that we have a God that loves us unconditionally.

All those thoughts went through my head yesterday, and then some. I very much felt like I was being attacked.

But before going to bed, I spent some time reading my devotionals. I am going through Psalms (I really like the First 5 app). And Boy, that is an up and down emotional rollercoaster there. Poor David. I feel like I can relate to how he is feeling sometimes (without being attacked by a mob and all). I was reading yesterday’s devotion on Psalms 61-62 I read:

“For God alone, O my soul, wait in silence, for my hope is from him” (Psalm 62:5)

It is so hard to trust in God, certainly when the pain seems too much to bare, but all I have is indeed hope. Continuously reading the bible, even when I don’t feel like it brings me hope, it brings me nearer to the one who truly loves me and I need to remember that more. So instead of trying to hide from everything, I need to go to Him, and that is I will try to do today.

Lord, please give me grace today. Bring peace to my heart. I need you so. Amen.