Is there a friend in your life who could use a little (or a lot) of encouragement? Life is full of ups and downs, highs and lows. Sometimes it’s easy to be a friend through the ups and the highs, but we might struggle to reach out through the downs and the lows. Do you have a friend who is hurting? grieving? struggling? Maybe you have a friend who is overwhelmed with a toddler and a new baby. Perhaps you have a friend who is discouraged by a recent setback. Whatever the circumstance, find a way to encourage your friend. Need an idea or two?
Today I am sharing 5 ways to encourage a friend.
Text (or call).
I’m sure you know your friend well enough to know if a text or a call is most convenient for them. A friend with many young children probably appreciates a text message. A single friend who just had surgery might prefer a call. Whether you choose to text or call doesn’t really matter. Taking the time to send a message of encouragement is what’s really important. Text them a joke. Write out a prayer. Call and be a listening ear. The moment you feel prompted to send a text or make a call, do it. Your friend (and you) will be happy you did!
Send a note.
I know, I know, a note?? Isn’t that so much work and didn’t I just say you could call or text. Yes, a text or a call are great options. A note or letter is the unexpected choice. How fun to receive mail that isn’t a bill or an advertisement! Run to your nearest Dollar Tree and buy a pack of beautiful note cards for (suprise!) a dollar and send your friend a word of encouragement. Notes and letters don’t have to be a thing of the past. Encourage a friend this week with a simple but meaningful note.
Make a meal.
Making dinner tonight? Why not make a double batch and drop the extras at your friend’s home? The meal does not have to be extravagant or expensive. Keep it simple. You might even choose to order a pizza or some other take-out option. If making a meal doesn’t work, consider baking cookies or muffins. Bringing a food item or meal to a friend lets them know you are thinking of them in a very practical way.
Give a gift.
A small gift given at a time other than a birthday or celebration is a great way to encourage a friend. A small plant, a favorite magazine, a fragrant candle or even a cup of coffee from the local cafe are just a few simple gift ideas. If a friend is sick with a cold you could put together a little “get well” basket with items like tissues, cough drops and chapstick. A small, thoughtful gift can quickly brighten the day!
Encourage a friend with time, specifically your time. You might be tempted to say, “I’m just too busy!”, but I won’t allow you to say that. Just kidding! You can say that, but I would encourage you to make space in your day and week for a friend. Giving of our time and energy is a sacrifice, but it’s a beautiful act of love. Make time for a friend this week, and see what it does for her (and you).
I hope that something on this list inspires you to be an encouraging friend. It’s something I want to work on in my own life. I want to be an encourager. I want to push aside the busy and see my friends, be there for my friends, encourage my friends. Let’s all make a little time to encourage a friend today!
What about you? How do you encourage your friends? How have you been encouraged?
Until next time,