We are living in challenging times. One consequence of these challenges has been a loss of faith. Even if you’ve been able to stay centered during this period, many people you know may have had their beliefs shaken to the core by the death and despair of the past year. If this concerns you, here’s how to support a friend who’s struggling with their faith.
Talk To Them
We could all use a friend right now—even if we have to talk to them through video chat instead of in person. If a friend feels spiritually adrift, make yourself available for discussion and support. Don’t be surprised if the talk turns into a spirited debate, and don’t take offense if your friend has some pointed words for the church or organized religion in general. What’s most important is making sure people know they’ll always be welcome back, even if they’re questioning their faith right now.
Give the Gift of Reading
The window for traditional gift-giving may have passed, but in a sense, that’s all the more reason to stand out from the pack and give a very important gift. Whether it’s the Bible, the Torah, the Quran, or other spiritual literature, it can be a thoughtful and considerate gift for anyone struggling. Even if your recipient already owns a copy, a new edition, like a King James Version of the Bible, can put a different spin on the same scripture.
Be a Good Listener
In times of personal and spiritual tumult, one of the best things you can do to support a friend who’s struggling with their faith is to listen—listen closely, thoughtfully, and without judgment. Don’t expect to be a master therapist who can counsel a friend back to a better place with the right words of wisdom and turns of phrase. As a friend, you should make sure they feel their concerns and questions are heard.