MY RECOMMENDATION: This is a helpful little book from a pastor who knows hurt and suffering to great depths. The book is transparent, practical, and rich in Biblical truth showing us how to minister to those around us in deep pain. I find it gives helpful insights to obey that Biblical commands to “weep with those who weep” and “rejoice with those who rejoice.” The chapter on “Faithful Friendship” is worth the price of the book. I highly recommend Pastor Furman’s book. It will be great equipping tool to aid us in becoming invaluable assets in the body of Christ to minister as He did to hurting people.
CHAPTER THREE – Faithful Friendship
There is a kind of ministry that is without words. It is simply being there. Certainly Scripture is the best balm for someone’s soul, but there are times when all you need to do for the moment (or for several days) is just sit quietly with someone. It has often been said that Job’s friends were fantastic until they opened their mouths! (page 48-49).
But be aware that there is a kind of listening that fails to concentrate on what someone is actually saying. When you and I do this, we presume to know what the other person has to say, and we don’t care about what they are really trying to communicate. It’s easily noticeable when you are merely looking for a chance to speak. We need to remember that the Bible is not a Band-Aid, and we best not go around slapping our favorite Bible verses on suffering people. Sometimes they just need a friend to be present and understand that this is a difficult time in the their life. I can think of many times when people have been a silent presence for me in my pain (page 48-49).
Being There: How to Love Those Who are Hurting by Dave Furman, published by Crossway, 154 pages.