Last Sunday we dug into the Book of Job to see how supportive Job's friends were when he faced the largest crisis in his life...losing his work, his possessions, all of his children and then suffered further with a devastating skin disease. The verdict on the encouragement, support, love, and compassion of his friends? They failed Job miserably. They may be best described as "when having friends like that, who needs enemies?"
If Job's friends had just hung onto their first response...sitting with him and listening...we would be saying something totally different about them. Instead, they stopped listening, stopped loving, pointed fingers, and lectured him giving what they felt needed to be give--all in their mind to help their friend, Job.
I remember a story I heard long ago about a woman who had surgery and was home recovering. A dear friend of her called and said she would be over in an hour to be of help. True to her word, the friend arrived and partly true to her word, she offered help. But what she offered ended up not really being the kind of help needed. The friend arrived with a wonderful container of chicken noodle soup which the woman recovering from surgery put in her refrigerator after shifting around 6 other containers of chicken noodle soup!! The visiting friend intended to be helpful but brought what she felt was needed rather than taking time to ask and listen...listen...listen.
I'm just suggesting that maybe we can pause and re-think how we reach out to help one another. Just a thought...
Rev. Patti Napier
"The well of God's providence is deep, the buckets we bring are small." Mary Webb