Making Room for Lament

In the months from April to August of this year, we have attended five funerals and sent a eulogy to be read at a sixth. These were services of worship and remembrance, held in honor of people we loved, people whose lives intersected with ours regularly, even when those lives were very short. It began […]

Why I Amplify Their Stories

I feel the tension every time I open my computer and am bombarded with need on every side. My news feed is filled with pictures of families fleeing from rising waters and stories of refugees flooding into the no man’s land between countries. There are a thousand different appeals for funds, for volunteers, for someone—anyone—to […]

Learning to Ask For Help

“Just because I am quiet, it doesn’t mean I’m OK.” These were the words that I spoke to my husband during one of the most challenging seasons of our lives. It was the winter of 2008. Several months earlier John’s younger brother had died quite suddenly leaving behind his grieving wife, three teenage sons and […]

Sympathy, Empathy, Solidarity–What Helps When You Hurt

How can you tell the difference between sympathy, empathy and solidarity? I’ll tell you–it’s all in the face. *** The face of sympathy has a tilted head, a strained smile, and slightly widened eyes. I say face, but it’s normally faces; hundreds of them. In the supermarket, hospital, school, I see them looking at the […]