Be an Awesome Friend, Deploy an A.N.D.

“Friends, I’d say you’ll do best by filling your minds and meditating on things true, noble, reputable, authentic, compelling, gracious—the best, not the worst; the beautiful, not the ugly; things to praise, not things to curse.” – Philippians 4:8 MSG

Photo: Raye Wortel

Photo: Raye Wortel

So you have this friend …


She sighs heavily as she plops down beside you.


Bracing yourself, you ask what’s going on and she starts in on all the reasons why her life is one big stink.


Part of you wonders why you ask, but she’s a friend – a good one, and you wish there was something you could do to help change her state of mind.


But you’re stuck. You’ve encouraged, supported, and listened for hours on end. You’ve felt her pain, understood her struggles, but sometimes you just want to shake her and throw her into a vat of positive thinking (in the kindest way possible, of course.)


She’s in a rut – and maybe you’ve told her so, yet her negative thoughts have become her go-to response to life.


It’s time to deploy an A.N.D. or what I like to call an Attitude Nurturing Directive.


I recently spent time with a friend in this exact situation. As she started listing what was wrong, my gut reaction was to spout back with my own list of why I think she’s terrific, and how her life is filled with many wonderful things.


But the problem is, it’s my list. It’s all from my point of view. Who I think she is, and what I think she can do.


I realized my reasons can only influence, claiming her own reasons could bring about change.


So how do you deploy an A.N.D.? I’m glad you asked. Take a look at our conversation:


“What about when you fought that dragon?” I asked.


“Yeah, that was good.” she replied.


“AND when you climbed Mount Everest?” I asked.


“That was pretty amazing, uh?” she replied.


“AND … ?” I asked prodding her to keep going.


When she filled in the blank, I threw out another AND, and another, and another.


Pretty soon she had her own little list of sunshine. It wasn’t dictated to her. She purposely search her life for the good stuff.


As she focused on the ANDs in her life, I saw light return to her eyes. She seemed braver and more, well, grateful.


We can’t make people think positively, or beautifully, or authentically. We’re just not capable of changing others. We only have the power to influence. They have to grab hold of noble thoughts for themselves, but an A.N.D. may help them get there.


So, the next time you meet up with a friend (or a spouse, child, sibling, etc.) who has a negative go-to response to life, be awesome, and deploy the “Attitude Nurturing Directive”.


Let me know how it goes, I’d love to hear!


Here are some verses for a friend (or for yourself) who needs a mental pick-me-up:


1 Samuel 12:24


“But be sure to fear the Lord and serve him faithfully with all your heart; consider what great things he has done for you.”


Luke 17:11-19


Jesus Heals Ten Men With Leprosy

Now on his way to Jerusalem, Jesus traveled along the border between Samaria and Galilee. As he was going into a village, ten men who had leprosy met him. They stood at a distance and called out in a loud voice, “Jesus, Master, have pity on us!”

When he saw them, he said, “Go, show yourselves to the priests.” And as they went, they were cleansed.

One of them, when he saw he was healed, came back, praising God in a loud voice. He threw himself at Jesus’ feet and thanked him—and he was a Samaritan.

Jesus asked, “Were not all ten cleansed? Where are the other nine? Has no one returned to give praise to God except this foreigner?” Then he said to him, “Rise and go; your faith has made you well.”


1 Corinthians 4:7


“For who makes you different from anyone else? What do you have that you did not receive? And if you did receive it, why do you boast as though you did not?”


1 Thessalonians 5:16-18


“Rejoice always, pray continually, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.”


Hebrews 12:28-29


“Therefore, since we are receiving a kingdom that cannot be shaken, let us be thankful, and so worship God acceptably with reverence and awe, for our “God is a consuming fire.”

2 Replies

  1. Lori perez

    I have a friend just like that. Thank u for giving those Bible verses that I can hopefully use. Really enjoyed reading today’s Hope Filled Road.

    1. Raye Wortel

      You’re welcome Lori! If you try the A.N.D approach, let me know how it works.

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.