Shut Up and Listen | Today’s Christian Woman

12 Apr

How to encourage someone who’s hurting 

encouragement

“What miserable comforters you are!”

She never actually uttered those words, but her eyes shouted them from behind her tears. She had just laid her soul bare. The silence afterward lasted only a moment before those around her erupted in a chorus of “Trust God—everything will work out,” and immediate quotations of Jeremiah 29:11.

I really wanted to cheer up my brokenhearted friend, but how could I avoid adding to the chorus of trite clichés? I had no idea what to do or say.

Ever been there? When we see someone downcast, we want to encourage them with meaningful, restorative words. True encouragement, though, is a tall order. It requires more than a pithy quip and pat on the back. So what are we to do?

Close your mouth and open your ears

When a hurting friend opens up about a struggle or crisis, we have to stop talking in order to hear them well.

For the remaining article by Meryl Herr: Shut Up and Listen | Today’s Christian Woman.

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3 Responses to “Shut Up and Listen | Today’s Christian Woman”

  1. annabachinsky April 12, 2013 at 2:46 pm #

    “Close your mouth and open your ears”. Absolutely loved that! It’s hard to do but sometimes it’s the best thing to do.

    • hebeckonedme April 12, 2013 at 2:57 pm #

      It reminds me of the quote, “God gave us two ears and one mouth so we can listen twice as much as we speak.” I don’t know who said it but it is insightful.

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