How We’re Learning

By Kori Yates

Friends in our military world are many. We have friends who are friends for a season and friends who are friends for life. We have those who watch our children while we take another to the emergency room, bring dinner at moments when we have no idea what our family will eat, low crawl through the mud with us, walk through difficult season of marriage, and make sure our awards are straight on our uniform.

Friendships come through time together, shared experience, difficult seasons, and celebrations. I know as I think back on the friends the Lord has brought across my path, I could not be more thankful for the dinners, the cheering on, the childcare, the moments over coffee, the “rescues,” and so much more. I am thankful, but how do I truly show gratitude to friends in real time? In this moment?

Truthfully, not one of them probably does what they do in order for someone to thank them. They do it because they are kind and generous, love me and my family, or are compassionate in addition to many other reasons. Nevertheless, showing gratitude is important.

A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.

(John 13:34-35)

Showing gratitude comes down to loving people. It really isn’t rocket science nor does it require in certain skill. It’s simply a matter of being grateful and sharing that gratitude with others. Below I have listed some ideas on how to show gratitude toward friends. Hopefully, it will allow you some grace in the way you do so, give you some new ideas, and maybe spark some thoughts of things you have done that you could share with the rest of us.

How to Say Thank You:

  1. Write: Take the time to write an actual note. You don’t have to make it about any specific act, but just the things you love about them and the fact that they are in your world.
  2. Call: They consider it the “original social media.” A phone call makes a difference in us and in others.
  3. Time: Spend time with them – take them to coffee, invite them to dinner, etc. – hang out with them.
  4. Pray: Praying for those who have been a blessing to us is surely a blessing to them. It’s also nice to let them know you have prayed or are praying for them.
  5. Give: Take the opportunity to do something in return. Though not expected, having someone offer or even initiate doing something for you is mucho awesome. 

Your Turn:

Who has done something for you lately? How can you thank them? What are some ways you show gratitude to friends?


Lord, help me to see the generosity and blessing of others and remember to take the time to say “thank you.” You have truly blessed us with many friends over this adventure we call life.