When We Don’t know what to Say



My Dad died 13 years ago.

He suffered from bone marrow cancer

for 4 long years before that.

I learned a few things during the illness,

the funeral and the strange process

that followed called, “grief.”



I learned to hate the phrase,

How’s your Dad?”

and later, “How have you been doing?”

They cared. Most people truly cared, but didn’t know what to say.

So they asked a question. MOST times I’m all for question-asking,

but not during these times.

When someone wades through heartache & grief they never

know when their emotions are gunna wanna spill out. Being put on

the spot to give a report on your sick loved-one or heart-broken family

(or self) can actually add to the pain of the moment. It can even feel

like the person asking the question is selfish. Sometimes they are.

Sometimes people just want the lastest info…. but mostly people

just really want you to know that they care!  So why don’t we just SAY THAT!

“I CARE!” or

You’ve been on my mind all week.”


“I’ve been praying that you’d find

extra strength in Jesus this week.”

Stuff like that leaves the other person encouraged and gives

them the opportunity to say nothing!  OR to say something if

they would like. No pressure. No selfishness.


Sometimes a GOOD, CLOSE friend needs to look a friend in the

eye and ask, “How ARE you? And that close friend has earned the

right to ask. That’s another story.

TOMORROW I’ll post OTHER ways to encourage someone in these situations.

If you’ve experienced an extremely painful situation and/or loss and have

thoughts to share… please feel free.