When the Best Advice Is No Advice
"Rejoice with those who rejoice, and weep with those who weep."1
"Dear Dick," a Daily Encounter reader writes, "I am hoping you can provide some words of wisdom that I can use to help a friend whose 18-year-old daughter has become pregnant. The daughter had received a scholarship to a certain College but it has been revoked. I would appreciate any advice you can provide for this mother as well as the mother to be. I value your Daily Encounter. It has made a huge impact on my life and my relationship with God."
"Dear Eileen (name changed)," I replied, "sometimes the best 'advice' to give to hurting people is not to give any advice but to 'weep with those who weep,' and to let them know that we care and that we love them.
"I did this for a friend recently who was hurting real bad … I just held him while he (a young adult) sobbed in my arms. After his pain subsided, we prayed together and I assured him that he was very much loved. He was dealing with some major childhood hurts that he had never resolved as well as the recent loss of his girlfriend.
"At least for right now this is probably the best thing the distraught mother can do for her hurting daughter … and perhaps the best thing you can do for your friend. Do remember, however, that when Jesus grieved, he wept too."
Suggested prayer: "Dear God, please help me to develop a compassionate heart so that I will always be a friend who knows not only how to rejoice with those who rejoice; but also, how to weep with those who weep. Thank you for hearing and answering my prayer. Gratefully, in Jesus' name, amen."
1. Romans 12:15 (NKJV).