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Stand by MeA Guidebook of Practical Ways to Encourage a Hurting Friend
How to become an encourager? Begin by going to God, who is your encourager, and asking Him to soften your heart and infuse you with love and concern for others.... Put yourself in the other person's shoes: spend a few moments thinking about the concerns in that person's life. Lois Mowday Rabey
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If I speak in the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I am only a resounding gong or a clanging cymbal.... If I give all ... but have not love, I gain nothing.... Love never fails. 1 Corinthians 13:3, 8
There is no substitute for sincere love when reaching out to those who suffer. One cancer survivor says, "I hated being an 'assignment' for some people."
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Fragile and delicate are the feelings of most who seek our help. They need to sense we are there because we care ... not just because it's our job. Charles Swindoll
Love is not enough; it has to be love with action. Love enough to carry a piece of my pain and share my hurt. Dave Biebel
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He who knows he is loved can be content with a piece of bread, while all the luxuries of the world cannot satisfy the craving of the lonely. Frances J. Roberts
It meant so much for friends to come and just sit with us or listen to us if we needed to talk or cry. To know that someone had cleared a busy schedule to come to our side to be with us ... was the most tangible display of "denying self" that we witnessed. Candy Cooper
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Yes, at times encouraging a hurting friend is difficult-even painful. But the sacrifice I make in the process of encouraging is far less than the pain my suffering friend endures. Kim Jones
Jan and I received encouragement in many different ways. Often it came in the form of letters, cards, and gifts from people we didn't even know. That encouragement is wonderful, but we were also deeply blessed by people close to us who encouraged us by what they gave of themselves.
I think of our friends Bobby and Patty. She was scared to death of flying, but she stepped way out of her "comfort zone" and got on an airplane with her husband just to be with me during one of my surgeries. That is a gift of one's self.
During one of my hospitalizations, my team was in New York for a game. Several of my teammates took the time to come and see me. There were plenty of other things they could have done with their time, but they came to see me. It was so good to look up and see their faces in my hospital room.
And I think of my friend Sealy Yates who took time out of his incredibly busy schedule and spent several days by my side. He listened when I wanted to talk and did whatever I needed him to do, twenty-four hours a day. He even slept on an uncomfortable cot next to my hospital bed. It was such a comfort to awaken in the middle of the night and see that I wasn't alone. To this day, the sacrifice he made blows me away. Dave Dravecky
Being an encourager is costly. It takes thought, time, and energy. Most of us live such frantic, self-centered lives that we simply don't notice other people's need for encouragement. We're so busy keeping up with our own lives that we don't take time to stop and think how we might touch someone else. Lois Mowday Rabey
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My command is this: Love each other as I have loved you. Greater love has no one than this, that he lay down his life for his friends. John 15:12-13
Excerpted from Stand by Me by Dave Dravecky Jan Dravecky Amanda Sorenson Copyright © 1998 by Zondervan. Excerpted by permission.
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