I've been thinking about a recent conversation I had with a friend. We were talking about working with people - lately, I have been helping a few close friends work through some of the most difficult situations any person could ever go through. This friend of mine mentioned how he could never do the kind of work I do because he could never think of the right things to say in any of those situations.
I was flattered that he thought so highly of me, but I had to tell him: most of the time, there are no right words to say. There are no words that will make it all better. Sometimes things are so bad that there is nothing to say at all. Sometimes speaking will only make the pain worse. In these instances, attempting to offer the right words to someone may be the worse thing you can do.
"So, what do you do?" he asked. More often than not, just being there is enough. Sometimes all a person needs or wants is a shoulder to cry on, and I am more than willing to offer the two that I possess. In many cases, listening is of much greater importance than speaking. You might not know the right words to say, but you can always listen. We also have arms that can hold a person, pat a person on the back, or offer a consoling hug, which can be a lot more comforting than having the right words to say.
I also believe your heart has to be in the right place. People can tell if you really have a heart for them or if you are just acting like you care. At my church, we often say: "we celebrate with those who are celebrating, weep with those who are weeping, and mourn with those who are mourning. We live life together, both the highs and the lows." That is the way I deal with everyone in my life. You have to have a heart for people, or you are really doing more damage than good.
I wish I had the right words to say to fix any situation in life. The fact is: I don't; no one does. Don't let that deter you from helping people. I can't tell you how many times someone has told me, "Thanks for being there." I can tell you exactly how many times someone has told me thanks for having exactly the right words to say: zero. Anyway, thank you for taking the time to check out this post. Have a wonderful week everyone!