Things I do, or don’t.

I read on Facebook that a friend I haven’t talked to in a long time is hurting. Going through a really rough time. Well today it’s this one friend, but it’s not only one friend, it’s many friends. Many friends, because this happens all the time.

But today, this one friend is hurting. And I want so much to reach out and say something kind, encouraging, helpful.

But I don’t.

Words are not enough–so many times¬†they are only words, trite and oft-repeated. Perhaps, even, unwelcome. Because people always say the same thing. I’m sorry you’re hurting. I’m thinking of you; I’m praying for you. It’s not that it’s insincere–I’m sure it isn’t! It’s just… I don’t want to add to the din. I don’t want my words to get lost in the crowd.

But…

Dearheart,

I know you hurt. And I see that your life is in tumult. I hurt for you. I hurt with you. My chest is tight, and my brain can’t think straight. I want to cry, but I don’t even know why, because I’m not sad. Except that I am. Because you, my friend, are grieving. I am praying for you, and I am thinking of you. Even though I am silent.

My silence is not a sign of indifference. It signals how deeply I feel for you, and how much I long for healing, for you and for your family. If I put it into words…well, I can’t, because words are not enough. They aren’t.

I hold you close to my heart, and I hope somehow you will know I care. And that if you were here, I would hug you so tight you’d have no doubt of my caring.

I wish I were the type who could say these things out in the open, join the dozens and dozens who comment on a Facebook post. But I’m not.

However, it doesn’t mean I don’t sincerely, profoundly empathize and sympathize. Just so you know. If ever you hurt, and I don’t say anything. And you wonder why…