Learning To Comfort...

~ Posted on Thursday, July 8, 2010 at 11:21 PM ~

Here is another awesome article I found that I would like to share through my own blog meme, along with my own personal experience:

Learning To Comfort

When she heard that her best friend’s baby died, Andra didn’t know what to do. Should she call her friend right away or wait a few days? What should she say? She asked her mother, Mary Farr, a children’s hospital chaplain, for advice. “Phone her now,” her mother said. “Tell her you love her and that you’ll call back later.” Andra followed that advice, and it meant a great deal to her friend.

How should we respond when those we care about suffer a loss? 2 Corinthians 1:4 tells us that God “comforts us in all our tribulation, that we may be able to comfort those who are in any trouble, with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God.” It’s in God’s school of comfort that we learn to better understand the needs of those who hurt.

Mary Farr writes, “We live in a fragile and imperfect world tinged by brokenness and cloaked in unanswered questions. Some things truly aren’t fair. This is hard.” She encourages people to resist the temptation to fill the silence with talk. Instead, we need to be comfortable with saying, “I don’t know,” and not try to provide easy answers. And when there’s nothing to say, just sit together.

When friends need comfort, ask “the Father of mercies” (v.3) to teach you what to say and do.  —David McCasland

The comfort God has given us
He wants us now to share
With others who are suffering
And caught in life's despair. —Sper

God comforts us to make us comforters.


Reading this article reminds me of the time when my mum was in the ICU, days before she passed away. Mum was still conscious then but her kidneys are failing and she's been feeling weak and having difficulty in breathing.

I would like to share about the story of this old lady (in her mid 50s) next to mum's bed who is a diabetic as well, and she has been suffering from diabetes for over 7 years. One of her leg is wounded and starting to excrete pus, and the pus which also went into her blood circulation is making her unconscious and unaware of her surroundings. When she is awake, she sometimes cannot recognise her own family members. I have seen her talking adoringly to her husband and children (1 daughter, 2 sons). I have seen her scolding the doctors and hitting the nurse. I have seen her screaming for her husband to get out of the dialysis room, threatening to stab the 6 inch needle (use for dialysis) to her own veins if he did not leave the room, while continuing to scream out profanities and saying her husband did not support her living, did not even give her 50 dollars.

I was sitting on the other side of the bed next to my mum when all this happened (very scared she will stab any of us in the room actually). This are not her own actions. It's the pus which poisons her blood and goes into her brain that made her react that way. I remembered thanking God that my mum is not sick like that. Even though her kidneys are failing, she does recognise us. I mean, can you imagine how sad it will be for your own loved ones to curse and scold you and cannot even recognise you?

Anyway, back at the ICU unit when the dialysis session was over, we found out that the old lady's condition is getting worse and the doctor recommended that her leg be amputated to stop the pus from getting worse. As I was still at the ICU ward, I couldn't help but listened to the conversation as well and I saw how sad the old lady's family members were. I prayed for God's will on my mum's conditions.

When the old lady woke up, she didn't even remember the scene at the dialysis room. I saw her reactions when her family members told her what the doctor said. I saw how she cried that her leg is going to be cut off. I saw how her family members cried with her as well. If the leg was not amputated, the pus will spread further and she will be in worse conditions. You see, just the pus around her foot is causing her to threaten to stab her own veins.. imagine if the pus spreads all over her body? Now, if the leg was amputated, there maybe side effects as well.. as a diabetic patient, we all know that any injury to the foot especially is very very dangerous and risky. It's kinda like a do will die, don't do also will die situation...

Sometime later while the surgeons are getting ready for the operation, I went to the lounge room just outside the ICU unit (2 sofas provided for family members and visitors) and saw the old lady's daughter sitting on the sofa, body slumped and looking miserable. Until today, I do not know how I can bring myself or have the courage to approach the girl and asked her whether I can pray for her and her mother.

Here I am, with a mother who is fighting for her dear life, kidneys failing, mouth coughing out blood as she tried to breathe... offering a prayer to a stranger... I have never in my life be so brave to do that. I never dared to approach a stranger, never dared to even offer any prayers, let alone tell people I am a Christian. And I'm doing all of that at that instant. The girl (around my age) said yes to my prayer request. I was very nervous as I've never done this type of thing before in my life!

(* Photo taken from Google image search)

As she bent her head low and listened, I prayed with her. I prayed for God to protect her mother and for His will to be done. I prayed that her family will be given strength and comfort in overcoming the obstacle. I prayed for the surgeons skillful hand and wisdom in making the right decisions during the operation. I prayed that if her mother should be taken away, to let it be swift and that she will be spared from any sufferings.

Needless to say, the operation was a success. Although the old lady lost her leg, she is able to recover from the operation and was transferred to a normal ward after that. I have no idea what happened to the old lady or the girl as my mum passed away few days later. I did not get to see the girl again. But I am glad I did what I think is right. I am happy to be able to offer a bit of comfort to the girl, even though I desperately needed to be comforted as well... I do wish her and her mother well and I thank God for the courage He gave me to be able to pray and comfort a stranger despite my own situation.

* Please hover mouse and read more on: John 14:1, 2 Corinthians 1:5

Comments (1) -


Thanks a lot for the sharing. I was deeply touched by the article. I always asked the first question in the article. Now, I know what to do - Tell them that I love them, and will continue to support them.

Comments are closed