"To him that is afflicted pity should be showed from his friend,” Job 6:14
“The holidays will be hard,” people around me said. I already knew they would be, and wasn’t sure why people needed to remind me of a fact I could not forget. But then I reasoned within myself: What should they say to me? I thought of my own struggle to know what to say to the bereaved. I thought of how I would feel if people wouldn’t say anything to me about my loss. I thought of how they could just avoid talking to me since it was hard to know what to say. And then slowly the truth slipped into my heart. When people tell me the holidays will be hard they are, in a way, giving me permission to be sad and have a hard time. Stating the obvious shouldn’t irritate me; it should give me peace…because people around me are acknowledging my pain.
While grieving, it is best to extend grace to one’s comforters—even in their lack of understanding. Forgive their blunders; remember you’ve undoubtedly made some of your own. Accept their comments as permission to be sad. Give the comments that hurt you most to God. He will be your unfailing Comforter, for He is the God of all comfort and the Father of grace. The next time a comment strikes you as insensitive or odd, determine to receive it and look for comfort that may be hidden within it. You just may be surprised at what God teaches you.