Thursday, June 04, 2009

being there

Nothing can replace simply being present for someone. We go to meet with them, not thinking we can solve their problems. But to listen in God's presence. And maybe to offer a humble word, along with encouragement to them.

I recently had the privilege of meeting with a dear brother in Jesus. I went with a sense of brokenness, not thinking I had anything helpful to offer, in fact thinking I am in need of help myself.

But in the midst of our time, I could sense God's presence with us. As I sought to listen and share a bit, with some encouraging words to a brother, made in God's image, and being remade into the image of Christ.

How can we be present for others? What should we do during those occasions, and what should we avoid doing? Do we always have to say anything at all?


lorenzothellama said...

Very Dear Ted,
I have just come over from Susan's, and like you, feel distressed at the way things are going over there, and don't wish to comment again, at least, not for a while.

Between you and me, I think a lot of 'experiments' and stem cell research is done with embyonic fluid, i.e. the water surrounding the baby, and in the umbilicus. I suspect experimentation goes on, woth the dead babies too, but I just don't want to think too much about that. Afterall, a lot of experimentation goes on in autopsies and that doesn't cause an outrage.

I feel a bit caught in the middle between Maalie and Luther. I don't like abortions, but I can see why some women want one, although that doesn't make it right. Maalie can be extremely arrogant at times, as can Luther. The two of them are so sure they alone are right, all the time!

Thank you for all your reasoned, careful and thoughtful comments on Susan's blog.
Love Jill.

Anonymous said...

there is Love is this post.
thank you.

Ted M. Gossard said...

Dear Jill,
Thanks so much for stopping by.

I hear what you say. Yes, we can be conflicted alright. We need creative ways to address these problems, and compassion on women who all too often are left alone with their pregnancy.

Christians need to be at the forefront- not simply "cursing the darkness", but "lighting candles", better put letting the light in Jesus shine- in helping people through these problems. And yes, we need to encourage medical science to find other ways of securing stem cells, and not through discarded embryos- which is a devaluation of sacred human life.

None of us are right on everything, and in a true sense we're never right at all on our own in anything- in our sins and limited perspective. Which of course is why, in love Jesus came: to take our wrongs and the wrongs of this world on himself so that beginning now, and in the end, all can be made right, as well as new, through him.

Thanks for your kind words. I really appreciate your presence here and on Susan's blog. And am glad to have met you through blogging.

Best blessings to you and yours,


Ted M. Gossard said...

Thanks, sister.

Yes, for us all in all of life, the Love of God, and the God who is Love- in Christ.

Anonymous said...

i am torn in how to think of my comment at halfmom's. i have love for mallie, yet, i think that i often thought if i was nice and patient with him that he would see the Love of God. and yet, it got to me that it looks like he comes to bait people. it is such a fine line, and since it was not my blog, i suppose it was not my place to speak the way i did. but it is done. i could say a lot of good things about mallie and could easily dismiss the fact that he is lost and angry. i would like to just let mallie be mallie, yet, i think that God is does not want to let go of mallie. it has just come to me i have neglected to pray for him and that is true neglect and lack of the Love for someone that is required of me.

i did not put that in a very good way at halfmom's and said some things that might actually be fuel for mallie's hurt or anger.

like jill says...your comments are reasoned and careful.
something that i have yet to learn.

Ted M. Gossard said...

You expressed your thoughts at the time. Much you said was important and good to be said then and there. We've all erred or said some things that we would say differently if we could redo it, that's for sure!

I doubt that Maalie takes offense to what you said. I'm not sure all he wants to do is bait people; I don't think so. But he can be stirred to that when engaged in what I think are uncivil exchanges. And he does take a hard line against Christianity. But that's my take.

Your point of us praying for him is good, and about jamming the Bible down people's throats, and how salvation is a work in the Spirit. I thought those were good and apt, there.

Thanks for sharing here regularly, Nancy. Your comments are always appreciated and often make me think. And although I can't speak for Susan, I'm confident she'll appreciate that you commented there, as well as at least much of what you said.

Grace and peace,


Kurt Willems said...

I have found in my own journey that the power of presence is a gift of mine (not that it is not a responsibility of all Christians). I have had moments in my life where the Holy Spirit has simply worked through me to bring the presence of peace... and I have experienced this from others as well in my stressful and broken life circumstances. Ted, I believe that simply "being there" is more powerful than any word, if prior to "being there" our lives are pouring into people in love.

Ted M. Gossard said...

Thanks for the insightful, helpful comment.

And it reminds me of Paul's testimony that he could bring God's comfort to others since he had experienced that same comfort himself. He certainly, in love was pouring his life into the life of others.