Praying for Those Who Grieve

Several years ago, after the loss of one of my friend’s husband, I was asked to create this list to help direct prayer for those grieving.  I pray that it helps you in praying for the grieving…even if that grieving person is you!

To help those grieving, you can pray for:

  • The physical strength to get through the extra tasks associated with a death—from the funeral itself to the phone calls to all the creditors, insurance companies, etc.
  • The emotional strength to get through the same—dealing with all the paperwork and all the expressions of sympathy
  •  A clear head to remember all the details that need to be taken care of
  •  The ability to let people help them, regardless of how uncomfortable it can be at times
  •  Peaceful sleep
  •  An appetite
  •  The strength to ask for help when they need it
  •  The strength to ask to be left alone when they need it
  •  The freedom from self-consciousness when they tear up a million times and in a million places
  •  Ease in actually saying the words that their loved one has died
  •  Loving friends who will listen (especially important when a wife loses her husband—those words she needs to say each day need to go somewhere)
  •  Peace through the holidays, especially the first ones without a loved one—birthdays, anniversaries, even the first time they do anything they always did with the other person
  •  Financial peace—especially if they were not the financial person in the family before
  •  Freedom from “what-if” types of questions and regrets—to forgive themselves for not being perfect and to know without a doubt that the other person loved them even if they were not perfect
  •  The ability to trust fully and completely in God—to crawl up in His lap and let Him drive for a while
  •  The ability to answer all the tough questions they are asked—especially those asked by their children
  •  Discernment to know when to let others in their family alone and when to push them into talking about any issues about the person who passed away—especially their children
  •  Having the freedom to realize that all grieve in a different way, and just because theirs is different than someone else’s doesn’t mean it is wrong or incomplete or any reflection of how much they cared for the person who died
  •  Support from others who have been through the type of grief that they are facing—especially those a little farther down the path of this journey who can give them advice and help them know that they are doing OK on their journey—someone to show them where the potholes in the road are so that they can slow down for them
  •  The strength to get out and be with others
  •  The ability to recognize the signs of loneliness and depression and the strength to do something about them if they are facing them
  •  Peace about being alone—learning to be alone without being lonely
  •  The strength to seek out a “new normal” for themselves and their family
  •  The freedom to know that grief has no time limit or set of specific steps that they need to go through and to give themselves a break if they seem to take one step forward and two steps back
  • Discernment to know what changes to make in their lives and which things to leave the way they were—finding a balance between old traditions and new ones, and old ways of life and new ones
  •  The ability to see God’s hand in their lives, and to look for ways that they can glorify Him during the grief process
  •  The strength to cry out to God when they are hurting and to accept the comfort that He gives—and to look to His people for the same
  •  The strength to realize that God never gives them more than they can handle with His help, and that He will be there today, tomorrow, and forever
  •  The ability to trust Jeremiah 29:11:  “For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you.  Plans to give you hope and a future.”

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