Rejoice with those who rejoice, weep with those who weep. — Romans 12:15 ESV
I was going through the worst breakup of my life. Sleepless nights, not eating, random crying outbursts at work. Everyone knew I was a mess, and it was obvious I was broken.
One day my coworker Patty showed up at the office with a necklace for me. It was a simple silver necklace with the word hope inscribed on it.
Up until this point, Patty and I had hardly exchanged pleasantries. We weren’t very warm to each other, as we hadn’t exactly gotten off on the right foot.
“What’s this?” I asked Patty as she gave me the necklace. “This belongs to you now,” she replied. She too had experienced a painful breakup in her past. She said my experience reminded her a lot of what she had gone through when her heart had been shattered. Someone gave her this necklace and told her to hold on and never give up hope.
Her beautiful, thoughtful gesture brought me to tears. I was touched by how this necklace had served its purpose in Patty’s life and now she wanted to give it to me, even though we weren’t close friends.
We finally “saw” each other that day. We shared stories. We exchanged words of encouragement. We became each other’s biggest cheerleaders, personally and professionally.
I believe God put Patty in my life for a special reason, and the way our friendship developed taught me a lesson I’ve kept in mind ever since:
- be someone else’s sunshine whenever you can.
A Ray of Sunshine
A simple gesture can leave a lasting impact on another person’s life. Being the light in someone’s darkest moment is one of the most important actions we can take.
When someone is going through a dark time, people often don’t know what to do, so they do nothing. Not because they don’t want to but because it may feel too vulnerable or they don’t want to overstep their bounds. The truth is, everybody wants to feel loved and noticed.
Empathy is one of the most beautiful things we can extend to another person. Empathy says I’m with you. When someone is going through heartbreak or divorce — I’m with you. When someone has lost a loved one — I’m with you. When someone has lost a job — I’m with you. When someone got the promotion of their dreams — I’m with you. When someone reached a goal they never imagined — I’m with you. Showing empathy meets someone right where they are, and that is what God calls us to do.
Ways to Encourage Others
You can be the sun shining through on someone’s cloudy day.
- Order them delivery from their favorite restaurant.
- Invite them to go for a walk.
- Write them a letter of encouragement.
- Do their chores for them — take out their garbage, walk their dogs, collect their mail.
- Go for a drive together and stop for a treat.
- Watch a funny movie with them and serve their favorite snacks.
- Put together a gift basket of their favorite things.
Excerpted with permission from The Sunshine Mind: 100 Days to Finding the Hope and Joy You Want by Tanya Rad and Raquelle Stevens.
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Which comes more naturally to you: rejoicing with those who are rejoicing or mourning with those who are mourning? For most, is the celebration. But, who around you could use a kind word, a meal, a note, a thoughtful act of compassion? ~ Devotionals Daily