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5 Ideas to Help Others During Difficult Times

It is truly a blessing to be able to help others and shine the light of Christ to the lost world. As soon as you start helping others, you will be inspired and motivated to help even more people.

Contributing Writer
Sep 07, 2022
5 Ideas to Help Others During Difficult Times

Helping others is a crucial part of the Christian life. The Bible tells us many times the importance of helping others (Philippians 2:4; Hebrews 13:16). It can be hard to go out of our way at times to help others, but it is the right thing to do.

Even in the midst of our busy days and schedules, we need to take the incentive to help those around us. It is beautiful in God’s eyes when we help others.

1. Pray with Them

One idea to help others is to pray for them. Even if the person you are helping is not a believer, pray with them.

The very act of you praying with them could help lead them to the Savior. By praying with others, you are interceding for them, and you are also learning more about the person.

Often when we are struggling, we don’t open up about our struggles, yet prayer has a way of causing us to get vulnerable. By praying with others, you will also make them feel loved and cared for.

When you pray with others, make sure you ask the other person any prayer requests they may have before you begin praying. You also need to be genuine in your prayers rather than having a rehearsed prayer to make you seem “holy” or “religious.”

It is best to be kind, caring, and genuine in our prayers rather than being worried over how eloquent our prayers sound. In addition to praying for them, we also need to take tangible steps to help the other person.

James tells us this vital truth, “What good is it, my brothers and sisters, if someone claims to have faith but has no deeds? Can such faith save them? Suppose a brother or a sister is without clothes and daily food. If one of you says to them, ‘Go in peace; keep warm and well fed,’ but does nothing about their physical needs, what good is it? In the same way, faith by itself, if it is not accompanied by action, is dead” (James 2:14-17).

Thus, we can help others by praying for them as well as helping them in tangible ways.

2. Buy Their Groceries

A second idea to help others is to buy groceries for them. While many of us are in tight financial situations, it can make a world of difference to someone if we buy their groceries for them.

I was inspired to include this idea on my list because after my mom passed in 2016, so many of our neighbors and friends brought us groceries, which really helped because none of us felt like going to the grocery store. We all would rather stay at home and mourn our loss.

In the same way, I think it is important that we extend the same kindness and love by buying others’ groceries at crucial times, such as after one of their loved ones had passed away after someone had a baby or after someone had major surgery.

This simple gesture of buying groceries can make a world of difference to them. Even if a person has not had any major changes to their life, the simple act of buying them groceries could go a long way, and you might even be helping in ways you didn’t know.

3. Cook Them a Meal

A third idea to help others is to cook them a meal. Maybe if you feel buying groceries is too much of a financial strain on you right now, you could cook a meal for an individual, a couple, or a family.

Your kind gesture could really go a long way and help them feel valued. Used to in the south where I grew up, it was common for existing neighbors to bring a dish or a meal to any new neighbors who moved in to make them feel welcomed to the neighborhood.

Similarly, when we cook a meal and deliver it to the individual, couple, or family, it makes them feel welcomed and cared about. As Christians, we should always ensure that others know they are welcomed, valued, and loved.

Your simple gesture of helping others by cooking a meal could help a new mom who didn’t have time to cook, the college student who has been studying so much that they forgot to eat, or the elderly couple who can’t get around as well as they used to.

Cooking a meal for someone else will not only bring joy to the family, but it will also bring joy to your heart as well.

4. Donate Clothes

A fourth idea to help others is to donate any of your old clothes to a charity of your choice. Many Christian organizations will accept clothing donations as well as gently used items.

In addition to Christian organizations, many other organizations will take clothes, such as rescue missions and clothing drives.

It might take some research on your behalf to find an organization that will take clothing donations, but it will be well worth it to know you are helping someone in need to have proper clothing.

Donating our old clothes can make a huge difference in somebody else’s life. It could provide them with a t-shirt and shorts for the summer, or it could provide them with a warm coat for the winter.

Items that don’t fit us anymore or items that we haven’t worn in a long time shouldn’t just collect dust in the closet because somebody could benefit from the clothing piece.

This doesn’t mean you have to donate every single piece of clothing that you don’t need anymore because some clothing items have sentimental value.

Special items that our grandma, grandpa, or parents have given us are important and one of a kind. We don’t have to donate these items, but rather just items that we don’t need, don’t fit, or don’t want anymore.

5. Volunteer

A fifth idea to help others is to volunteer. Volunteering is a great way to help those around you. There is a myriad of different organizations you could volunteer for, including the library, the soup kitchen, or different opportunities at your local church.

Volunteering not only helps others, but it also brings great joy to your own heart. By volunteering at a local ministry or organization, you will be able to help others in tangible and hands-on ways.

I have volunteered at a myriad of different places and different opportunities in the church, which all have helped in my Christian walk. I cannot recommend volunteering more because it enables you to help others, as well as it helps your own Christian growth and character.

To see all the smiling faces when you help others is well worth the time and energy you put into volunteering. Depending on where you volunteer could also open the door to even more opportunities to help others.

As an example, sometimes, when you volunteer at your local church, the leader of the ministry might offer you other opportunities within the church to use your talents. Volunteering is a great way to help others and get involved with the community around you.

Helping Others

As Christians, it is important that we help others in tangible ways that make a difference. Helping others should not be bothersome as we should want to help others and extend love, kindness, and compassion in our actions.

The Holy Spirit can guide us and help us know who needs our help. It is truly a blessing to be able to help others and shine the light of Christ to the lost world. As soon as you start helping others, you will be inspired and motivated to help even more people.

For further reading:

Does God Help Those Who Help Themselves?

Where Does Our Help Come From?

Why Does the Bible Have to Tell Us to Be Kind to One Another?

Photo Credit: ©iStock/Getty Images Plus/Highwaystarz-Photography

Vivian BrickerVivian Bricker loves Jesus, studying the Word of God, and helping others in their walk with Christ. She has earned a Bachelor of Arts and Master's degree in Christian Ministry with a deep academic emphasis in theology. Her favorite things to do are spending time with her family and friends, reading, and spending time outside. When she is not writing, she is embarking on other adventures.

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