AS A PASTOR, I learned the hard way that weeping people need a quiet friend, a person who will simply stand by and listen. One day I was called to the hospital. A middle-aged woman in our church had died suddenly and unexpectedly. Her husband was in the hospital room, angry, upset, weeping.
“How could this have happened? She was getting better. I was preparing to take her home!”
I put my arm on his shoulder and listened. Then we sat down, and between sobs, he told me what a wonderful wife she was. I just sat and listened as he recalled the years of their lives together. It lasted a couple of hours.
Later, at the funeral, the man seemed calm. Soon he became a faithful leader in the church. Then he thrilled my pastoral heart when, one day, he said to me, “You were a great help to me when she passed away. Thank you for listening.”
Thank God for loving friends who simply, lovingly, stand by and listen. That helps us move through grief, through the “valley of the sahdow.” Thank the Lord for listening lovingly.
– Richard B. Wilke
From the reading for February 7, 2012 by Richard B. Wilke in The Upper Room Disciplines 2012: A Book of Daily Devotions. Copyright © 2011 by Upper Room Books. All rights reserved. Used by permission. http://bookstore.upperroom.org/ Learn more about or purchase this book.
When has someone been a comfort to you by listening? Share your thoughts.
And he cured many who were sick with various diseases, and cast out many demons; and he would not permit the demons to speak, because they knew him.
Mark 1:34, NRSV
This Week: Pray for those suffering from natural disasters. Submit your prayer to The Upper Room Living Prayer Center or share it in the comment section.
Did You Know?
In need of prayer? The Upper Room Living Prayer Center is a 7-day-a-week intercessory prayer ministry staffed by trained volunteers. Call 1-800-251-2468 or visit The Living Prayer Center website.
This week we remember: Brigid of Ireland (February 1).
(Courtesy of Vanderbilt Divinity Library)
Sponsored by Upper Room Ministries ®. Copyright © 2018 | PO Box 340004 | Nashville, TN 37203-0004 | USA