We’ve all said it when we encounter a grieving person, “Let me know if you need anything”. We actually mean it too—we would do anything to offload the burden of grief if we just knew what would actually help that person. On a recent episode of This Lyric, That Truth, I had a chance to talk to Bethany France who wrote a book called Not Another Lasagna, How to Truly Help a Grieving Friend, (listen here) (order book here)

We talked in depth about things her community did that *actually* helped her after the loss of her husband, like showing up and making multiple offers of help and not assuming after the first few no answers that she didn’t actually need the help, or inviting her as a newly single person out for dinner so she could choose what to eat and have an enjoyable night out with friends. Asking her how she was doing in that particular day and offering specific help with things like yard work so she could play with her young son.

We talked about things that hurt too, like people not sitting with her at church or avoiding talking with her at the grocery store, or assuming she did or did not want to talk about things.

We even talked about what she has against lasagna (which isn’t anything at all) but she explains why people call it the death food and offers suggestions of other creative way to bless people with food when they are grieving.

This is one of those conversations full of advice you will hope you will never need, but truthfully, all of us will at some point in our lives—how to truly help grieving people. I’ve just listened in again for the second time and remembered quite a few things I’d forgotten.

I invite you to tune in to the This Lyric, That Truth Podcast for that discussion and some other great conversations with former NFL player and now director of the Gateway Mission in Holland, Jay Riemersma about his time in the NFL and how God used an injury to open a new door in his career (listen here). Or how Jordan St Cyr stays humble in-the-midst of an exciting Christian music career (listen here).