How to Lessen Your Friend’s Pain
By Rick Warren
“Laugh with your happy friends when they’re happy; share tears when they’re down.” Romans 12:15 (The Message)
There’s something interesting about pain and joy. Whenever you share a joy, it gets doubled. But it’s the opposite with pain. When you share a pain, it’s halved.
So when your friends are going through a crisis, they need you to help carry the load and, thus, lessen the pain.
Sharing your friend’s pain is not the same as sympathy. Sympathy says, “I’m sorry you hurt.” People don’t need your sympathy. They need your empathy. Empathy says, “I hurt with you.” Sympathy stands at a distance. Empathy draws close.
The ultimate form of love is compassion. Compassion says, “I’ll do anything I can to stop your hurt.”
When you read the Bible, you’ll find that Jesus was repeatedly moved with compassion. He shared in people’s hurt. And, to stop others’ hurt, he was willing to do whatever he could, including going to the cross. That’s right—he was willing to die to stop your hurt. That’s compassion.
The Bible says in Romans 12:15, “Laugh with your happy friends when they’re happy; share tears when they’re down” (The Message).
What do friends do for each other? They show up. And when they show up and find their friend is sad, sometimes they sit and cry with that friend—they weep with those who weep.
Friends don’t give pious platitudes. They don’t give advice when someone isn’t ready for it. They don’t try to talk a friend out of his pain. They don’t promise everything will be okay.
They just show up, shut up, and hurt with their friend. And in doing so, they lessen the pain and show the compassion of Christ.
For more Daily Hope with Rick Warren, please visit pastorrick.com!
Jesus made it clear that in this world, we will have trouble. And whether you’re facing a personal trial or are simply overwhelmed by the troubles in our world, you know this is true.
But Jesus also said that you can take heart . . . because he has overcome the world!
We want to help you anchor yourself in this hope with Pastor Rick’s Verses of Hope Scripture Box, featuring a very special collection of verses to encourage you daily.
We’ll send you this beautiful, gold Scripture box as thanks for your gift today to help take the hope and peace found only in Jesus to people everywhere through Daily Hope!
Inside your box, you’ll find artfully illustrated and inspiring Scripture cards, along with blank cards designed for your personal notes. And with the look and feel of real leather, as well as a beautifully embossed verse on the outside, the Verses of Hope Scripture Box also makes a great gift!
So request yours today-and thank you for helping take the hope of Christ to the world!
*The USA IRS code permits you to deduct the amount of your financial gift to Daily Hope that exceeds the fair market value of materials you received from Daily Hope.
This devotional © 2018 by Rick Warren. All rights reserved. Used by permission.
You can listen to Rick Warren on OnePlace.com.