Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Divorce—Comforting Others

Jenny and her husband Doug were having breakfast with 15-year-old Jessica to help her deal with her parents’ divorce. Jenny asked Jessica, "Yesterday was a tough day for you wasn’t it?" Jessica nodded, “I was there when the mail was delivered and Mom opened the divorce letter." "That must have been difficult for you," Jenny said. Jessica thought for a moment. "Mom seemed relieved that it was all over. I think that bothered me as much as seeing the divorce finalized in black and white. It hurt that she was almost glad to be rid of Dad. But he's still my dad, and I love him." Doug put his fork down. "I feel sad for you, Jessie, that your mom doesn't understand your feelings for your dad." Jessica rubbed her chin with her thumb. "Thanks, but I'm doing a lot better about things like that since we have been meeting over the last three weeks." She flashed a smile of appreciation Jenny's way. Jenny winked her acknowledgment, then she said to Doug, "I think Jessie is ready to meet Alyson. What do you think?" Doug smiled and nodded.

Jenny turned back to Jessica. “Alyson is a new seventh grader in our middle-school group. We found out last week that her parents were divorced in the spring. She moved here with her mother. Doug and I were wondering if you would like to meet Alyson and share your experi­ence with her." Jessica felt both honored and scared at the same moment. "I don't know about that. I'm not really a counselor. I don't know my Bible that well yet." "We're not asking you to counsel Alyson," Doug said. "Just share your comfort and encour­agement with her as a friend, like you're already doing with your younger brother. Tell her your story and what you are learning about getting through your par­ents' divorce. Can you do that?" Jessica glanced back and forth between Doug and Jenny. "Just do what I'm doing with my brother?" she said. "That's all?" The couple nodded in uni­son. Suddenly it sounded very simple. "Sure, I can do that," she said confidently. "When can I meet Alyson?" Doug picked up his fork. "Not until I finish my pancakes," he said with a big laugh. Jessica smiled. This was her chance to help Alyson just like Natalie had helped her. This must be what God meant when He said that we can give comfort to others with the comfort that we have received.

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