John Maxwell said, “We don’t live by bread alone. Sometimes we need a little buttering up.” He was speaking, of course, about encouragement.
The power of encouragement is that it gives people hope. When hard times come and discouragement settles over a person, a word of hope can keep that person pressing on. A word of hope says, “You’ll make it through, I believe in you, God is with you and will help you.”
Here, then, are 20 ways to become an encouraging person, thereby, giving some hope to others.
- Tell your family and friends how much you appreciate them, value them, and love them.
- Did you get excellent service at a restaurant? Tell the server and the manager.
- Encourage a single-parent mom. These moms don’t have it easy.
- If you use Twitter, re-tweet someone’s post that you found helpful or uplifting. On Facebook it’s called sharing.
- When you introduce someone, add a few words of praise, or say a little bit about that his or her accomplishments, or what he or she means to you.
- Be specific when you offer praise. “You did a good job with . . .”
- If you are part of a Sunday School class, just show up. Your presence really does encourage your teacher.
- When someone you know is dealing with a crisis, be there for that person. Just your mere presence is a powerful encouragement.
- Digital encouragement on social media has its place, but, in our digital world the hand-written note still carries more power.
- Use more kind gestures, like holding the door open for someone, or letting someone ahead of you in line.
- Pray for people who need some hope and encouragement. This way you bring the power of God into the situation.
- Always have an upbeat, positive attitude. Our attitude is more caught than taught.
- Text or email a helpful Bible verse to a discouraged friend. Say, “I believe this Bible verse will give you strength.”
- How long has it been since you genuinely spoke encouragement to your husband or wife? Resolve to be your spouse’s best cheerleader.
- To some people it sounds cheesy, but always say, “Thank you.” This step lets others know that what they have done was noticed and appreciated.
- Smile. It’s like a mental handshake that welcomes people. And your smile is contagious.
- Tell your children how happy you are that they are in your family. Give them a hug for no reason.
- Phone someone and say, “You were on my heart today. I wanted to call and see how you are doing.”
- Speak highly of your pastor. Thank him personally for all that he does for your congregation.
- Do you see Jesus in someone? Say so. Many people are striving to live for the Lord, but aren’t sure they are doing a good job of it.
Remember that encouragement and hope coupled with faith in God brings mighty power to our lives. Hope in ourselves isn’t enough when times are difficult and life is hard. God’s power is the anchor that holds us steady in the storms of life.
Encourage your own life. Read this powerful and inspiring book based on the 23rd Psalm. Order from Amazon or Barnes and Noble. E-book or paperback.