Monday, November 1, 2010
What's the best way to show compassion to a grieving friend in Nigeria? Short of traveling there (which Dr. Chris still advises against for a variety of reasons), I had to make do with a phone connection to Pastor Esther who recently lost her 76-year-old father.
My first instinct was to sit with her in silence, but that's awkward on the phone. So I asked her what kind of food we could imagine that I was bringing her. Soup? Egusi, with pounded yam. And Schwepps, her favorite soda. Lots of Schwepps.
More silence. I didn't want to be like Job's friends who started to talk and reason, only to compound his grief. So I offered to pray. It was a bridge over the ocean, across the continents, and through the time difference. It was also an honor to provide spiritual compassion to one of my Christian role models.