“Let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds, not giving up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but encouraging one another…” Hebrews 10:24-25
This past week, one of my closest friends on earth lost her father. It was a sudden accident… full of all the typical questions that will forever go unanswered. She is only 28 years old, in school full time, works full time, a wife, mother to a toddler, and the caretaker of their home… and, after a midnight call, she picked up the pieces of a very full life and headed north 6 hours to the small town she grew up in.
As the oldest child, and her father unmarried, all arrangements fell on her shoulders. The funeral, the debts, the property, the younger brother who was still living with his father… all details left to her to wrap up and to clean up. She spent all of that week laboring over decisions no 28-year-old daughter should have to make, cleaning up the unfinished business of her father’s life.
My heart… broke for her. I wanted to drop everything and be at her side. The responsibilities of my own very full life preventing me from doing precisely that.
I cannot express the weight I felt in my spirit that week. A burden to lift my friend up in prayer. A burden to be with her. An overwhelming sense to encourage her. I’m not sure anything would have alleviated the pain that I still feel so intensely for her loss.
If the people nearest to you don’t know how you feel… tell them! If you sense a tugging at your heart to “be there” for a friend in need – GO! If you discern God urging you to drop to your knees in prayer for a loved one – obey! These are the things we will regret one day, folks. Not the outfit we didn’t buy, or the toy we didn’t purchase… but the lives all around us that are in need – and doing nothing about it.
Prayer: Lord, remove the blinders from our eyes. Allow us to see the needs that surround us. May we not fall complacently by the wayside and be content to do nothing. May we be spurred on by fellow believers and be an encouragement to them as well! Thank you for living this out so beautifully while you walked this earth 2,000 years ago. We love others because you first loved us.
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