Tuesday, June 10, 2014

15+ Ways to Show Love to Others

Years ago, I took the Five Love Languages quiz.  Not surprisingly, my #1 love language was Acts of Service, followed closely by Words of Affirmation.  While these are the ways that I best feel loved, I think they are also the ways that I show love.

Need me to help keep your kids?  Gladly!  Need help setting up for an event you are hosting?  Sure!  Need me to drive you to a doctors appointment?  Of course!  I often stay and clean up after friends' kids' birthday parties, because that is my thing.  (Just be sure to affirm me afterwards or I will get my feelings hurt...ha!)

I say that to get to this.  On Sunday at church, our pastor said that, as Christians, it is time to get off our butts (he said bottoms, because he is a pastor) and LOVE OTHERS.   A previous pastor often said, "People don't care how much you know until they know how much you care."  I don't know if it's because of my love language, but this fired me up, ya'll.  My faith is not about sitting on a nice, cushioned pew in a nice, cool sanctuary, drinking my coffee while listening to an ensemble and a sermon.  That has it's place, believe me.  Even as Christians, we need teaching and let's not suffer if we don't have to, am I right?  But, personally, I don't feel called to pack up my family and move to Africa.  I don't feel called to go all David Platt and sell everything I own for the gospel.  What I do feel called to do is show others that I love them.

Write letters to elderly and/or shut-ins.

Send gift packages to military families.

That mom down the street who can't keep her daughters' heads lice-free, because she can't afford the treatment?  Take her the Nix.  And maybe even volunteer to take some bedding home and wash it for her, because treating five lice-ridden heads is enough to drive anyone insane.

The new family in the neighborhood?  Take them cookies or muffins or even a full meal.

Ditto with the family with the new baby.  Offer to keep older kids for a few hours.

Send a note of appreciation.  Or encouragement.

Speak well of others, not because you have to but because you can.  (This goes along with my Words of Affirmation language--nothing makes me happier than hearing nice words about myself.)

Cook dinner (or order pizza) and invite a family over.

Pay for the person's meal behind you in the drive through.

Drop a gift off on a doorstep.  Muffins, cookies, chips and salsa.  Leave a note, so they'll know it's safe to eat :)

Pray for someone, and then let them know.  A simple text message saying "I prayed for you today!" can go a long way.

Contact your local school and see what supplies are needed.  Donate these.

Purchase and deliver items off a needs list for a Children's Home.  (Or nursing home, children's hospitals, etc.)

Leave a big tip with a nice note.

Deliver snacks to the local fire and/or police department.

Buy frivolous grocery items and deliver them to a family in need.  (Fruit, pop-tarts, popcorn, cookies, snacks.)

Go to a lower income neighborhood and hand out books (children and adult).  Books can be new or used.

Have more ideas? PLEASE share them in the comments.  The girls and I are making this summer a Summer of Service!

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