If you know someone who you think might be depressed or is going through a rough season of life, encourage them. You never know how your simple act of kindness will impact them. Women who are depressed often feel lonely and isolated like they are the only one dealing with depression. According to statistics, depressed women are all around us. They sit at the park, go to the grocery store, fill our church pews, serve in leadership and teach our children. I’ve personally walked through the valley of depression and know what it feels like to think I am the only Christian on planet earth who is struggling in this way. I hope you will find help and encouragement to help if you or someone you love is walking this difficult journey.
If your depressed friend could feel better, she would!
Sometimes saying nothing at all is interpreted as, “I don’t care enough to really talk about your problems.” Let your friend know you are interested in her and her life.
Don’t try to make her explain what she is going through. Just be there and offer a listening ear. Love her.
4. Just because she smiles, laughs and has a good day doesn’t necessarily mean everything is better.
So you finally work out a time for a girls night out and you have a fabulous time. Your friend, who you know is going through a rough patch, laughs, joins in the conversation and acts like her old self again. You assume she’s overcome depression and go on with life as usual. The problem is that many times depression ebbs and flows. She can have a good day sandwiched between really difficult days. Be sensitive.
Your friend needs to know you love her just the way she is and that you care. She wants you to pray for her, listen to her, tell her the truth and encourage her. Simple ways to encourage her:
Write a note
Send a “thinking of you” text
Invite her out and help arrange the details (where to go, childcare, transportation…)
Drop off fresh flowers
Make her dinner
Give her a gift
Simple acts of love show her that she is important when the enemy is telling her that no one cares about her. Your kind deed might be the one thing that helps her through the day.
Who in your life can you encourage today? Even if none of your friends are depressed, all of these things will work in any friendship.
A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another: just as I have loved you, you also are to love one another. John 13:35(ESV)
Share this with someone you love!