Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Responding to Grief

Brett Royal has a good question about how people respond to good and bad fortune in praising God (or otherwise).

Here's my general rule: theological precision is less important than effective pastoral care. The last thing that you should ever do with grieving people is get into a theological argument with them. Work with them where they are, emotionally and theologically.


Gary said...

That's an excellent point. Sometimes all we can say is "I don't know...come Lord Jesus"

Brett said...

people naturally want to know "why?" or "why me?" in a time of crisis when they are not emotionally able to begin to comprehend an answer even if it is clearly presented.

This is why it is important at an intellectual level to think through these questions before tragedy arises.

For those that haven't, I think I agree with you. Grieve with them and do what you can to give comfort.

John said...

Well, to some degree, yes. But when people are in crisis and asky "why?", they aren't asking for a theological exposition. They're asking to hurt a little less.