I've been discouraged lately and a few people have done a few nice things to encourage me (mostly unbeknownst to them). I thought I'd share a few ideas on how we can be a blessing to others through the ministry of encouragement.
Here are a few things I have learned:
1. Money is not necessary to send encouragement someone's way. It doesn't matter if you have $50 or $5 there are ways to bless someone. Here are a few...a note slipped under an office door, a love note in your child's lunch, words spoken at an opportune time, a good solid hug or an "I LOVE YOU".
2. Small thoughtful deeds mean something. A little boy in my class brought me a diet coke a few weeks after school started. I had know idea that he knew I drank diet coke but he had been paying attention and seen me pour one into my cup one day and went home and told his mom. What a thoughtful deed that encouraged me so much.
3. A well thought out word. I'm not saying a habitual "thank you" doesn't go a long way, but I am saying that someone can tell if you have thought about what you are going to say to them. I was eating at a restaurant a few weeks ago when I saw one of my students waving frantically at me. After her meal was eaten she and her mom came over to say "hello." The mother then expressed some extremely kind words to me and when she walked away I was overwhelmed by her kindness and encouragement. In the midst of a difficult week she had spoken life into very weary bones.
4. Don't assume people know how you feel. If you appreciate someone...let them know. If you love someone... tell them. People don't automatically know that you feel that way about them... but if they did...think about how secure that would make them feel in the relationship.
5. Think of what would make the other person happy. Would going fishing with your son make him the happiest boy in the world? Would bringing your friend a coffee to work one day make her happy? So many times we don't even think about what brings happiness to another person's life. Make them feel special by truly thinking about things that bring happiness to their life.
6. Encourage with scripture. Share a verse in a sweet...loving...gentle way.
7. Be interested in someone else's life. It's easy to get consumed with what's on your plate or behind your front door. But when we are so inwardly focused we tend to put everything else on the back burner. That back burner still needs some attention every now and again.
Have you been encouraged lately...I'd love to hear how......please comment!!!