Ask Me, Please.

I have been guilty of this more times than I ‘d like to admit. 

I assume someone else’s feelings mirror my own and act on that assumption by withdrawing or not showing up or “giving them space”.

But the problem is, most times, on reflection, I realize my action (or inaction) was really all about sparing my own feelings  or staying within my own comfort zone.

The heart is deceitful above all things
    and beyond cure.
    Who can understand it?

~Jeremiah 17:9 NIV

So I’m learning to ask hard questions.

And I wish others would do the same.

Image result for dont assume ask me please

Before I assume someone doesn’t want companionship, or a phone call or another text or message, I’m trying to give them the opportunity to say no.  

I’ve been surprised more than once when I wanted to keep my distance in the name of “giving someone space” or “not bothering someone” that if I DID reach out, she responded by saying it was just what she needed.

I admit that asking risks rejection or worse-I might end up bearing the brunt of someone’s very bad day (or week!).  But not asking means I may not be doing precisely the thing God wants me to do.  I may be choosing the easy way out and rationalizing it so I feel better but the poor heart that needs my companionship or encouragement is left without the very help I was meant to provide.

I think Dominic’s death has made me brave in this one tiny place:  I say things I might not have said before.  I risk pain in relationships where I might not have been willing to risk before.  I assume that if I don’t speak important truths RIGHT NOW I might not get another chance.

I long to be a burden bearer for my friends and family because I know what it is to bear a burden.

So I ask and don’t assume.  

If someone wants to be left alone, then they are free to tell me.

But I will not stay silent or keep away simply for my own comfort.  

Who knows?  Maybe this is exactly the good work God has prepared in advance for me to do.

Image result for the good works that god has prepared for us

 

Author: Melanie

I am a shepherd, wife and mother of four amazing children, three that walk the earth with me and one who lives with Jesus. This is a record of my grief journey and a look into the life I didn't choose. If you are interested in joining a community of bereaved parents leaning on the promises of God in Christ, please like the public Facebook page, "Heartache and Hope: Life After Losing a Child" and join the conversation.

One thought on “Ask Me, Please.”

  1. Thanks for this Melanie. I too have become more brave in working at leaning into people who are suffering. Choosing not to stay silent and ‘go there’ with them because so few dare to. This is because, through losing my child and bearing this devastating burden, it is what I needed most from people. So this is now what I try to be for others. Suffering has giving me the language of pain and companionship with others who suffer. And I’m grateful for these new lenses even though they’ve come at such a price. Thankfully there have been a handful of people who have loved me well in my suffering- and this has often meant the difference between coping and not coping. And sadly some people close to me have added to my pain by being completely absent when I needed them most. In the name of ‘giving me space’ as they put it, they in turn added to my pain by being unwilling to walk alongside me in it. And I know that this approach was for their sake and not for mine. I now long to act differently towards others in need, even if it comes at great cost to myself.

    Like

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