The most beautiful forms of encouragement sometimes contain few words. This is the repeated reminder I’ve been getting over the past year.
When I look back at the hardest times in my life, it wasn’t necessarily the spoken words people said to me during times of darkness that meant so much. Rather, it was the shoulder available to cry on that spoke loudest. It was the warm embrace at just the right moment. It was the “I’m thinking of you” note in the mailbox. It was the friend across the table who simply listened as I attempted to express the ache.
Their words didn’t fix, yet their presence encouraged me deeply. Sometimes, the only encouragement needed is knowing we have someone in our life willing to hold our hand and journey with us through the dark.
Years ago, I had a friend who heard my distraught cries over the phone. She listened as I shared with her how life was crumbling down. The next thing I know, this friend and her husband were jumping on an airplane a couple of days later, arriving in my town at midnight, and hopping in a car with me and my two dogs. Their only goal for flying out to see me was to help me relocate 2300 miles across the country.
Through the dark and rainy night, we set off immediately on a three-day journey across multiple states, our destination would be the exact same state where my friend and her husband had boarded a plane earlier in the day.
It was a crazy thing for them to do. And yet, to this day, I remember their incredible act of love and generosity as one of the most encouraging things anyone has ever done for me. They were there for me. Their actions spoke so much louder than words ever could.
I know it’s not always possible for us to go to this extreme measure to encourage others. But, this memory does remind me that being an encourager means we back our words up with action. We live it out. We make ourselves available.
My friend James Prescott recently released a beautiful eBook about encouragement. I love this quote from his book:
“Let’s not make the mistake of thinking encouragement is
only about words. We must encourage in both our words, and our actions.”
You can download a free copy…yes a FREE copy of this new book HERE. Please head over and pick up your copy today.