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This may seem obvious, but sometimes prayer is the first thing that goes by the wayside in a time of crisis. Your grieving spouse may be in a constant posture of crying out to God, but they might also be feeling such despair that prayer seems meaningless. Pray over your spouse, even if that’s not your normal practice and it means stepping way out of your comfort zone. Pray for comfort, rest, healing, and for the joy of the Lord to supersede the sadness.
Remind your spouse of Romans 8:26, that the Spirit prays for us when we don’t have the words. Pray that the Spirit would minister to your spouse and remind them that we grieve with hope. That this world is not our home and that we have a home waiting for us where there are no more tears and no more sadness. Pray that those words aren’t empty but that they draw your spouse into a mindset of worship.
10. Be an Encourager
Our words can be used to build up or to tear down, and sometimes we tear others down without even realizing it, because we just didn’t put much thought into what we were saying. Now is not the time to be frivolous with your words. Your grieving spouse needs your words to be life-giving, not used as a weapon.
For instance, don’t say to your spouse, “I thought you’d be over this by now,” or ask, “When will you move on?” What your spouse needs to hear is, “I love you,” “I’m here for you,” “I’m praying for you.” If your spouse expresses a desire to talk to someone, a friend, pastor, or counselor, encourage them and help make it happen.
Don’t tell them you think they’re doing okay on their own. When you see them making an effort and having a “good day”, tell them you’re proud of how strong they are in hard times. Build them up, encourage them. Be intentional to not make them feel like a burden, but rather make them feel like a priority and a privilege to serve.
Grief is hard, make no mistake about it. Remind yourself that, just as your spouse is not alone you're not alone either. God is with you both. He is with your spouse as they are grieving and he is with you as you love, support, and serve.
God will give you the strength you need to walk this road with your spouse. He is faithful, loving, and merciful. He never tires of hearing us cry out to him. So, as you guide your spouse through their grief, let the Lord guide you.
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