Friday, February 18, 2011

More Helpful

In 1979, our hometown of Alvin, TX was devastated by a flood. Some reports put the rainfall in 24 hours at 48 inches. Our home was flooded with 5+ feet of water. Everything below that mark was ruined. My parents were on their way back from vacation, and I met my Dad at our home. As he and I saw the damage, I made the remark to him, "I know just how you feel." He stopped in mid-stride, turned and looked at me and replied, "No son. I don't think you know how I feel."

He was right. My words, though meant to comfort, could have been stated in a more helpful way.

I was in a hospital about 4 weeks ago as my Father lay dying. Again, I heard words of comfort from so many. Many of these words proved to be more helpful to me than ones I might have said if the circumstances were switched. Friends' words were tempered with wisdom and true sorrow. Words like "I'm so sorry this happened," rather than "It happened for the best." Or "I can only imagine how you've coped," soothed the heart better than "Be strong and you'll get through it."

Words are sometimes used to help others know we care, but the greatest expression of care came from friends just being there. These were not offering words but they were giving of themselves and their time. They just sat with me and other family members.

I hope I'm a little more perceptive and a lot more helpful than I was in 1979.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Go to church and preserve your marriage!

I've been reading a recent article "The Christian Divorce Rate Myth (what you've heard is wrong)". We've heard that the divorce rate among Christians is the same as in the general population. There are things that will act to lower the divorce rate for Christians. One, which the article noted, was being connected and active in a local church. It isn't enough just to attend once in a while. We must put church as a regular in our weekly schedule. Faith does matter. Do your family a favor- go to church and invite others to join you.

Watch for details concerning our Marriage Conference 2011.