Earlier this evening, I was writing something to send to a friend who is struggling. As I wrote, I teared up. Dave came into the room and asked me if I was okay. I said I was, and he exited. A few minutes later, he came back holding Bread. He put Bread on my lap and for a good while, I had that warm little body nestled with me while I wrote. I love that warm little body. And I so love Dave for offering what help he could.
Right now, I don’t know how to help the people I love. I have so many friends dealing with so much. I feel like I’m dealing with a lot too, but my challenges are in my abundance, if that makes sense. I’m struggling with a job that I have. I’m struggling with differences I’m having with people I love who are still in my life and who will remain in my life. I’m trying to improve my health, not because it’s in question but because I know it can be better. I’m craving different and more, not out of shortage but just out of desire. I feel very fortunate, especially when I see the challenges facing those around me.
Earlier this week, I told a dear friend that I feel like the burdens are not balanced. And they aren’t. I’m not ending a marriage or burying a child or dealing with a financial crisis. I didn’t get hit by a truck. I’m not feeling without purpose. Instead, I am living with a man I love surrounded by people I love in a city I love doing many things I love. Is it perfect? No. Do I get frustrated sometimes? Yes, more than I typically express. But I feel so fortunate right now.
I don’t want the challenges, but I wish that I could ease the challenges the people I love are facing. I wish I knew what to do, what to say, and how to help. I don’t. I write the words, but I don’t send them much of the time. I did not send what I wrote tonight.
The only thing I really know to do is to pray to the one who has the power to heal all things. So I do that. It’s a small thing to do, but it’s not an insignificant thing. A woman who lost her son last week reminded me of that just yesterday. As she is preparing for her son’s celebration of life, I asked her if she’d thought about what she can do – or we, her friends, can do – to help her get through the coming weeks. She said that talking to Jesus helps. She said that. To me. I went to be a support for her, but, in her grief, in that unimaginably difficult space, she reminded me that talking to Jesus helps.
She’s right. It does help. And the best thing about talking to Jesus is that I don’t have to have the right words. There are no right words. I just have to speak what is on my heart. That I can do. That I can always do.
Friends who are hurting and who have shared your struggles with me, know that I pray for you. Friends who are hurting and who haven’t shared your struggles, know that I would be honored to hear you out and to pray for whatever your situation might be. Friends, know that I love you and want so much to be a good friend to you in whatever way you need. And if I can do nothing else, I will at least talk to Jesus about your situation because I do believe, just as I was reminded by my amazingly strong friend, that talking to Jesus helps.