5 ways to really sympathize in a sympathy card

sympathy card
Going to the mailbox is a highlight of my day lately. I treasure every expression of kindness I receive there. 

When you want to help someone going through a loss,
here are 5 ways to add special comfort in a sympathy card. 

1. Make it personal  
Write something by hand, even if it’s just restating the stamped message (i.e., I’m sorry for your loss). That simple, personal touch makes a card extra-special. I received these notes below on a card from the precious 6th graders we taught in Bible class. They’re priceless.  young words2. Share a memory 
If you knew the deceased, say something about a shared experience or a happy memory. It will mean the world to their loved one.  personal words3. Spread the Word  
 Write out a comforting Bible verse in your card. My friend Louise writes at least one verse on every card she sends me, and she sends me a lot. Make a list of scriptures that are appropriate to share so you’ll have one handy when needed. Psalm 1164. Show some love 
 If you feel any affection at all for the person you’re sending the card to, go all out and sign it with “Love, ___.” Your friend won’t think you’re sappy; he/she will appreciate your sentiment. Feeling loved is the most comforting gift they can receive from you. with love5. Mail it any time.  
It’s never too late to send a sympathy card. Don’t think the moment has passed and you missed it. You haven’t. Sometimes the card that arrives much later is valued even more because it’s the only one in a lonely mailbox after weeks or months of drought.  

If you’re one who’s been blessed by receiving cards in the mail, you already know what I’m talking about.

And if you’re one of the blessed ones who already sends those cards, may God bless you doubly for doing so!

* * *

Have you been touched by cards, too?

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20 comments:

Debbie said...

Having recently suffered the loss of your mom, who better to share these words? Some people just don't know what to say or write. Your suggestions are so good. It helps to have people who care around you during times like these.

Love,
Debbie

Hazel said...

These are very helpful suggestions. Thank you especially for no. 4. Now that's clear in my head. And heart. I did no. 2 when my 6th grade teacher passed away. I was told his son-in-law read it during the funeral.

Barbara H. said...

I was blessed by many cards after my mom passed away as well. Just that someone thought to send a card was a blessing, but the personal notes were specially special. You gave some great suggestions.

One of my favorite verses when a loved one goes to heaven is, "Father, I will that they also, whom thou hast given me, be with me where I am; that they may behold my glory, which thou hast given me: for thou lovedst me before the foundation of the world" (John 17:24, sometimes just the first part). One for those of us left behind is one that was on a sympathy card sent to me: "Let, I pray thee, thy merciful kindness be for my comfort, according to thy word unto thy servant" (Psalm 119:76).

I have to say I have failed in the last thing you mentioned. Sometimes I think about getting a card or even actually get one, but then for various reasons forget to send it, and then feel perhaps it is too late. I will try to remember to go ahead and send it whenever. I do try to keep several on hand.

Dorothy said...

What a great post, Lisa! Especially that last thought about it never being too late to send a sympathy card. It truly never is!

Beth said...

a co-worker's husband died unexpectantly this week. I wasn't able to attend the services and want to send a card...thank you for your timely ideas! Blessings!

Melli said...

I used to send cards all the time... I really need to get back to that. I do always put a personal message in them though... when I do send one.

And I AM sorry to hear about the loss of your Mom. I have to tell you that I was here earlier in the week sifting through all of your Alzheimer posts... and you blessed me tremendously. I sO wish that MY Alzheimer companion was someone that I love the way you love your Mom. Sadly, my MIL and I never really "cared" for one another BEFORE the disease, and now that she is NOT that person anymore I really have to WORK to love her. I pray daily for God to HELP me do that. I think what a difference it would make to truly love the person... but then... it also would make it much harder to have them slip away... this whole ordeal must have been very difficult on you - but you really did handle it with true love and sooooo much compassion. You are SUCH an inspiration to other care takers.

I AM sorry for your loss - and you ARE in my prayers... and I know that there is sO much comfort for YOU in knowing that your Mom is SAVED and in Heaven with Jesus now!

God bless you Lisa!

Susanne said...

There is nothing like a handwritten note on a card. May God uphold you as you go through this time of the loss of your Mom.

Joyce said...

Thanks for the wonderful suggestions my friends. xo

Jerralea said...

This is the second time sending cards has been mentioned in my week ... I think God wants me to get back to sending them.

I love your suggestions for what to put, and thanks for the idea of having scriptures ready! I'm going to take that to heart.

God bless you, Lisa, in your time of grief. I pray comfort for you.

Stephani said...

How often do we think about sending a card and don't do it. I'm glad you included the part about it not being too late. I know that people who have lost a loved one continue to grieve for months long after the sympathy cards stop coming. It's good to keep remembering because they don't forget. ~ I wanted to let you know you're featured on my blog today!

Gattina said...

I never send cards anymore, only virtual once, otherwise I prefer to call the person.

Lisa notes... said...

Barbara,
Thanks for sharing those verses! I’ll have to add them to my list to keep.
Yes, receiving a card at all is a huge blessing. They’ve really helped me more than anyone can realize.

Lisa notes... said...

Melli,
Thank you for your kind words. I feel blessed that you read through the posts about my mom. I appreciate your prayers, and yes, I am VERY comforted knowing she is safe in Heaven with Jesus.

I’m so sorry that your situation is more difficult; I trust that the Lord will give you even greater blessings, though, for making the bigger sacrifice. It was easier to continue loving my mom because I could remember back to the good days, but if you don’t have that recollection, you are truly offering a sacrifice of pure love and obedience to God by continuing to care for your m-i-l. You deserve honor for that, and I applaud you for it. What an incredibly hard job you’re doing!

I will pray with you that God will help you love her in sentiment, but I know you are already loving her in action, which is what pleases Him. Hang in there, sister! You’ll have no regrets later for doing the right thing, even though it’s total work now.

cindy said...

Thank you Lisa for your suggestions. They mean a lot, sometimes we just forget and need a reminder. Putting a verse in the card makes it special.

Lisa you have been on my mind lately and in my prayers, God grant you strength and self wellness. All else offer it up.

Karyn said...

I know from painful experience how true your 'suggestions' are. Good points.

I am truly sorry for your loss.

Anita said...

Lisa, reading this is so timely, today I learned a friend's father passed away this week. I don't know her well, she had older kids in our Catholic school, she formerly shared a shop with my hairdresser and she is the sponsor of the service club my girls belong to in the HS. I want to send a card, maybe a plant, and now I know much better how to go about this. Isn't it odd how we know so little about proper etiquette, or just plain compassion when someone dies.
Thank you for sharing.

Brenda said...

Those are such good reminders, and sometimes we can send more than one card, or call the person later on. Grieving takes a long time.

e-Mom said...

Wonderful! I especially like the idea of sharing a specific memory. That's so meaningful. I'm going to share this post on FB. Excellent advice!

Blessings, e-Mom

Islandsparrow said...

Dear Lisa - I am so sorry to hear about your dear mother's passing. I also was with my mom through a lingering illness and know how difficult it can be. Praying that you find peace and rest and comfort in the days ahead.

sandy47 said...

I love these suggestions! It makes me want to remember to "just do it" and send cards and letters to people for all kinds of reasons - it is so uplifting to look in the mailbox to see those special envelopes with love -filled messages to brighten our days.

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