That was the title of a blog post I read last week. And it reminded me of 2 friendships—how I failed in one, and how that failure motivates me to do a better job at caring for my friends.
Decades ago, a friend was going through deep waters, and I didn’t know what to say. So, I said nothing. I told myself at the time that it was better to be silent than to risk saying the wrong thing…I may have sincerely believed that—but I was wrong. My silence left my friend feeling alone, and wondering if I cared. Years later, I confessed my fear of misspeaking to my friend, asked her to forgive me, and she graciously did.
Last week, a friend sent an email to our small group, revealing some of the hurtful things that she and her family have experienced over the years as a result of racism. I wanted to say something wise. Because I love my friend, I didn’t want to say anything foolish or hurtful…or just “multiply words without knowledge.” (Job 35:16)
I prayed, and waited, and finally wrote that I didn’t know what to say. I didn’t want to say the wrong thing, or something that wouldn’t be helpful. But I didn’t want to stay quiet and have her think I didn’t care. I assured her that I do care, I will help carry this burden, and I will pray.
I pray for my friend and her family. Events of the past few weeks have brought fresh sensitivity to old wounds. Aches from prior injuries. I pray for healing. I ask God for mercy and healing for our country. Because all of life is precious. Every. Single. One.
Psalm. 34:18 “The Lord is near to the brokenhearted and saves the crushed in spirit.”
Job 42:2 “I know that You can do all things, and that no purpose of Yours can be thwarted.”
Neh. 9:17b “You are a God ready to forgive, gracious and merciful, slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love.”