Early in the journey of our past year...with a broken, shattered heart...I cried out to God.
I remember it so clearly. I could barely catch my breath between sobs. And my question was not "why?" it was a deep longing to know that Heaven cried.
I stood in my bathroom looking at my swollen, blotchy, mascara-stained, notably sleep-lacking face...and sobbed. All I wanted to know is that God Himself wept. Did Jesus cry...? Did Heaven mourn as the worst of the worst had occurred?
I think far too often we awkwardly tip toe around people that are grieving. We don't know what to say...so we (wrongly) say nothing. Perhaps try to distract them and talk about happy things. No. No one is looking for you to solve their deep pain. No one expects that of you, so why do you expect it of you? In fact...most of the 'wisdom' you have to offer is going to come across as trite at best.
Want to know what we want? We want someone to mourn with us. Though you could never fully enter in to someone's pain...you can for a moment...try. You can cry with them. There is an odd comfort in knowing that someone is crying with and for you.
Don't worry...your tomorrow will be cheerier than theirs. You'll get up and go about your day. It's momentary for you. It's ok to go there. And honestly? It's all we want.
Not your words. Not your wisdom. Not anything you are afraid you don't have to give. Just someone to say "I'm so very sorry".
My dad had reminded me that Jesus did weep. At the death of His friend (even when He knew He was about to raise him from the dead...) He allowed Himself to go there. To enter in to the pain of His friends...and weep.
And that's what I needed to know. I actually longed for rain. I wanted the sky to wail and lament with me. I truly did. I hated that I woke to beautiful blue skies and sunshine as if all was well in the world...when in my world...? It was not.
The very best advice I could give...please take it from someone who has lived through unthinkable grief...is in Romans 12:15. Rejoice with those who rejoice...mourn with those who mourn.
I remember calling my friend and we both just sat on the phone and sobbed. She said nothing that I recall. I could just hear her sobs. And somehow that lessened my pain.
Can you be the one to cry with your friend who is suffering? You don't need the gift of words, lots of money or anything else...you just need to be willing to enter in to their pain and...weep. Mourn.
My friend sent me this song today...