A few years ago I was in situation of being in the midst of somebody else’s loss. Their loss was fresh, and it weighed on them heavily. Of course I offered my condolences and was sad to hear this news. But when I found out what it was, I poo-pooh’d it. Not to them mind you, but I did in my own mind. I thought their level of grief was a bit dramatic.
For some reason this story came up again recently and as I rehashed it, I was struck by a verse:
Rejoice with those who rejoice, and weep with those who weep. – Romans 12:15
One translation of this verse reads:
and mourn with those who mourn.
Conviction. The scriptures don’t put conditions on this. If somebody is rejoicing, I need to rejoice with them even if their victory is small or may be insignificant in my eyes. If someone is weeping, I need to weep with them regardless of how I feel about it. Making light of somebody else’s progress or loss has no benefit to me or them.
In Matthew 5:4 Jesus said:
“Blessed are those who mourn, for they will be comforted.”
We can be that comfort for each other. So let’s celebrate each other’s victories and weep each other’s defeats.
Let’s love our neighbor as ourselves.