This is a how-to guide on encouraging and confronting your female friends during certain issues in their lives. Some of these issues might not apply to you or your friends, but I would like to think of this guide as a tool that can help you sort through some similar issues. I always find that the Word of God is applicable for any situation.
For the sake of my fingertips, I am going to break this guide up into 11 parts. Each part will be split up into sections. The first section with be a brief description and overview of the issue. The second section will be the Dos and Don’ts of counseling on that particular issue. The third section will be biblical verses of reference concerning the issue, and homework to give to the counselee and go over with her afterward. These sections will be repeated throughout the 11 parts.
So without any further ado, we shall begin.
Part I- Death of a Friend
Issue: Death of a friend.
Description: Counseling a woman after the death of a close friend.
Overview: When a woman loses a close friend, she can become angry with God, herself, and those around her. Some women will grow spiritually from the experience by learning that they can share what they have gone through with others. Some women will grow bitter and accusative, blaming life’s misfortunes on other people. Some women will even deny that the death occurred. When someone close to you dies, mortality looms. The knowledge that life is short becomes pointed and more real.
–Do share with her the love of God. If she is a believer, remind her that God is a gracious God, a sovereign God who is in control of all things.
-If she is an unbeliever, do share with her the only source of hope in this dying world. Share the gospel with her.
–Do involve the ladies of the church in comforting her and giving her a sense of belonging and love. It is important to involve other women, because there might be other woman who has been through the loss of a friend and can share her heart with the counselee.
–Do allow her to grieve in a healthy way (i.e. crying, mourning, or even some form of non-violent anger).
–Don’t act or speak in a way that makes her pain and loss seem unimportant or trivial.
–Don’t belittle her and make her feel foolish for grieving.
–Don’t allow her to grieve in an unhealthy way (i.e. clamming up, becoming bitter, denying the death, or becoming violently angry).
Verses of Reference:
*Romans 8:35-39– Nothing can separate us from the love of God, not even death.
*Psalms 23:4, Romans 14:8– You can face death without fear, because Christ has conquered it.
*Psalms 116:15– The death of God’s children is precious. He mourns for you.
*John 11:23-26– Jesus is the Resurrection and the Life.
Have the counselee read these passages at home. Have her write out what she believes the Word of God is saying about death and eternal life. You can also have her write a letter to the deceased friend, pouring out her feelings on paper. Then have her write a letter to God, doing the same thing, but in addition have her write out what she is thankful for and praising God for all the happens in her life. Pray with her for comfort, strength and hope.
May God bless you as you help others.