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Some Friendly Advice

Who have you encouraged recently?

Hopefully you can think of a few people off the top of your head, but if you, like I do sometimes, get too caught up in your own life, you might need to stop and think for a minute.

Everyone likes to be complimented and feel appreciated. Just think of how it makes you smile when a stranger tells you she likes your shoes or says you look nice today. Something that little can change your attitude in a split second.

Sometimes, though, we get a little selfish. We worry so much about what’s going on with us, we get distracted from other people’s problems and focus on how badly our day is going. We treat others as civilly as we have to to keep our jobs and stay in school, and wait until we can leave and be alone in our misery.

But how selfish is that? When we’re self-focused, we miss out on so much that God wants for us. We’re meant to have people in our lives who can lift us out of our misery. And in the same way, we’re meant to be those people who lift the others up.

So if a simple compliment can make someone smile, think how much more it would mean to someone if you asked them how their day was going and actually meant it. If you simply listened to a story about them or a loved one. If you told them thank you for something they normally don’t get thanked for.

When we take our focus off ourselves and try to encourage others, we let go of the bitterness in our lives. We become happier people when we step out of ourselves and look to other people’s needs.

So who have you encouraged today? Did you tell your mom thank you for cooking breakfast for you? Did you ask your friend how her test went? Did you compliment a stranger? Asking yourself how you can encourage someone today will change the way you see others and yourself. It’s an easy way to show God’s love toward others. I encourage you to go out and do that now.

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