Spiritually naked people struggle with grief, loss, vulnerability, shame, depression, low self-esteem, and hopelessness. The spiritual clothes they lack are positive thoughts of gratitude, hope, acceptance, confidence, comfort, peace and trust.
Always listen first.
You don’t really know a neighbor’s needs unless you listen. Listening is the door to compassion.
Offer extra listening.
Listen to feelings and reflect them back.
Help your neighbor feel safe and private.
People who are “naked” feel vulnerable and exposed. Public criticism and judgment can be extremely hurtful. Confidentiality and non-judgmental acceptance are crucial.
Pay attention to feelings and reflect them back.
Take time to allow for full expression of feelings, especially feelings of grief and shame. Don’t try to talk your neighbor out of having those feelings.
Appreciate your neighbor’s good intentions and values.
Angels counter hell’s hurtful influences by activating good intentions and true beliefs.
Share thoughts that are hopeful and appreciative.
…But don’t do it in a way that invalidates their feelings of grief and shame or tries to manipulate them out of having those feelings.
Offer prayer and praise.
In sincere prayers there is a revelation of hope and trust, which are clothing for the mind, “a garment of praise for a spirit of heaviness.” Especially focus on how the Lord helps in times of trial.
Invite your neighbor to express gratitude and hope.
Your neighbor might keep a gratitude journal or write down some dreams and hopes for the next week, year decade or century. Again, don’t tell your neighbor what to feel. “What do you miss about…” “Is there something you hope for in the future?”
Help your neighbor recognize that all good is from the Lord and all evil is from hell.
Knowing this, we don’t have to make ourselves guilty of evil or take credit for the good.
Offer prayer asking for comfort, strength, wisdom and peace.
Help your neighbor feel safe and private. Talk about confidentiality.
Each of you share something you hope for your neighbor, and something you appreciate.
Each of you share something in yourself that is from heaven and something from hell.
Each of you share something that got you through a hard time.