“For I want very much to see you, so I may impart to you some spiritual gift to strengthen you, that is, to be mutually encouraged by each other’s faith, both yours and mine.”Romans 1:11-12
“Now may the God who gives endurance and encouragement allow you to live in harmony with one another, according to the command of Christ Jesus, so that you may glorify the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ with a united mind and voice.”Romans 15:5-6
We never know what others are going through.
I remember attending the memorial service of a family member and then heading directly to work at a local fast food restaurant. One of my first customers was my cousin—a teenage boy who’s father’s memorial I had just attended! It was then that I realized how important it is to be kind to others, to show them encouragement and appreciation.
When we know someone’s going through a hard time, we can give them an encouraging word. Sometimes it’s as simple as saying:
“You can do it!”
“I believe in you.”
“I’m thinking of you.”
“I’m praying for you.”
“Let me go with you.”
“Let’s sit down and talk.”
“Let’s go for a walk.”
“I’ll bring over a meal.”
“I’ll help with a bill.”
Other times we don’t know what may be happening with those we meet. That’s why it’s important to be an encourager, someone who creates positive interaction in another person’s day.
Smile, hold the door, say “hello.”
Ask a simple question to start a conversation.
Ask how they’re doing and really listen.
Look them in the eyes.
Linger a little so they can feel free to talk.
Slow your pace and share some grace.
Being available for others, even in quiet ways, can be a comfort and a blessing. This is not the time to preach or push your beliefs and feelings on others.
Instead, we can lead by example. I once received a church bulletin with a picture of a person with an open book for a head. The caption read:
“Be careful how you live your life. You may be the only Bible someone ever reads.”
Let’s make sure to show up with love, compassion, and a willingness to encourage those we encounter.
Prayer: Dear Lord, Please show me where I can be an encouragement to others. Help me to sense their needs and see them through Your eyes. In Christ‘s name, Amen.
Journal: Make a list of ways you can bless those around you. How has God used others to bless you?