- Promise to pray for them, and then be sure to take time to pray for them.
- Share Scripture with them (even if you don't know what they're going through, there are many verses you can still share).
- Listen...I always tell Autumn God gave us two ears so we can listen twice as much as we talk.
- Send them a card reminding them that you are praying for you them (again, please be sure you are praying for them).
- If you can afford it, send them some flowers, or go pick some wildflowers. What a nice reminder that they are special to you.
- Lastly, don't share their burdens as "prayer requests" to others, unless the individual has specifically asked you to. Some times "sharing prayer request" is just another word for gossipping.
- Psalm 9:10 "And they that know thy name will put their trust in thee: for thou, LORD, hast not forsaken them that seek thee."
- Psalm 18:6 "In my distress I called upon the LORD and cried unto my God: he heard my voice out of his temple, and my cry came before him, even into his ears."
- Psalm 27:14 "Wait on the LORD: be of good courage, and he shall strengthen thine heart: wait, I say, on the LORD."
- Psalm 30:5b "...weeping may endure for a night, but joy cometh in the morning."
- Psalm 34:18 "The LORD is nigh unto them that are of a broken heart, and saveth such as be of a contrite spirit."
- Psalm 46:1 "God is our refuge and strenth, a very present help in trouble."
- Psalm 61:2 "Hear my cry, O God; attend unto my prayer. From the end of the earth will I cry unto thee, when my heart is overwhelmed: lead me to the rock that is higher than I."
- Psalm 62:8 "Trust in him at all times; ye people pour out your heart before him: God is a refuge for us. Selah."
- Psalm 86:5 "For thou, LORD, art good, and ready to forgive, and plenteous in mercy unto all them that call upon thee."
- Psalm 119:71 "It is good for me that I have been afflicted; that I might learn they statutes."
- Psalm 119:165 "Great peace have they which love thy law; and nothing shall offend them."
- Psalm 130:5 "I wait for the LORD, my soul doth wait, and in his word do I hope."
These are just a few from the Psalms, most written by David, a man of God. I love how God showed the weaknesses of His people. David was a man after God's own heart, but there were times when he was discouraged. Paul says in I Corinthians 1:4 "Who [God] comforteth us in all our tribulation, that we may be able to comfort them which are in any trouble, by the comfort wherewith we ourselves are comforted of God." Somtimes God puts us through trials, so we may be able to comfort (and encourage!) others down the road who will go through the same thing. God is good!
There is good news for those discouraged! I Corinthians 10:13 says "There hath no temptation taken you but such as is common to man: but God is faithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able; but will with the temptation also make a way to escape that ye may be able to bear it."
I once saw this quote on a friend's facebook status: "Be kinder than necessary, everyone you meet is fighting some kind of battle." It's now one of my favorite quotes. I pray that each of us will be a Barnabas to someone today.