8 Simple Ways to Thank Those Who Serve Us

Ways to Thank Those Who Serve Us

So many people serve us.

The mail carrier.

The doctor.

The police officer.

The pastor or church staff member.

The teen who corrals the grocery carts in the parking lot.

The lunchroom worker at school.

The neighbor who feeds your dog when you’re on vacation.

Let’s be on the lookout for those who serve this week. Yes. Be prayerful. And watchful. Allow God’s Holy Spirit to tap you on the heart and prod you to simply say “thank you” to someone who serves.

Here are some simple ways to thank those who serve.

1. Pick up the tab.

If you are at a restaurant or movie and see a person who serves you or any of your family members, pay for their meal or popcorn and movie ticket.

2. Do a little snooping.

When you are getting your hair cut or sitting in the dentist’s chair {okay…this might be a little more tricky in the dentist’s chair!} do a little snooping. Try to discover the person’s favorite snack, color, sports team, flavor of ice cream, etc…. Then surprise them someday with a goody box or basket with some of their favorite things.

3. Fire up your oven.

Making homemade granola bars for the family? Bake a double batch and drop some off when you are out running errands to simply say thanks.

4. Slip them a card.

The next time you frequent their office or stop by their place of business, slip them a gift card to a restaurant, department store or an online site such as Amazon.

5. Utilize a banner, streamers or sidewalk chalk.

Decorate the front porch or sidewalk with a special message for the Fed Ex or UPS or USPS worker thanking them and telling them to have a great day. An iced tea or glass of lemonade would be an added treat.

6. Leave a message after hours.

Call the doctor or dentist’s office after hours and have your family leave a message telling them how much they appreciate them. What a treat to listen to first thing in the morning when they arrive.

7. Take out an ad.

Take out an ad in the local paper praising a local business owner, public servant or someone else who serves in your community. Tell a few things you appreciate about them. You could even write a poem!

8. Give the gift of prayer.

The next time you see the servant, ask them if there is anything you can be praying about for them. This is the best gift of all!

Now, what else can you think of? I’d love to hear your ideas!


For more ideas on sprinkling God’s love all year round, check out Listen, Love, Repeat: Other-Centered Living in a Self-Centered WorldKaren Ehman encourages us to to live alert, listening for “heart drops,” hints from those in our lives who need a helping hand or a generous dose of encouragement. Living alert lifts our own spirits, showing us that blessing others blesses us even more. Listen, Love, Repeat offers biblical teaching and suggests doable actions that are simple, heart-tugging, sentimental, even sneaky and hilarious. For a sneak peek at Listen Love Repeat, sign up for Karen’s How to Hear a Heart Drop five-day challenge.

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  2. Find out people’s names and show appreciation with and for them. Saying “Thank you, Julie” to a waitress or “You do such a nice job, John” to the grocery sacker can make servers feel special, because they know it isn’t just a generic please or thank you that you are using just to be polite. I will sometimes compliment them on their name as well, especially if it’s unique. I did that recently and learned my grocery checker hated his name because he thought his parents didn’t care enough to name him something different than his father. Being able to explain that being a namesake is very special, and a compliment, was a gift to that young man. You never know what a difference you can make, just noticing someone’s name!

  3. Lots of great ideas here. I find a simple note of thanks…doesn’t even have to be on a fancy card…is so appreciated. Be sure to mention something specific that person does. “I love how you always tell us a joke when you see us,” or something like that. As an added bonus, another note sent to that person’s supervisor can’t hurt, either.

  4. We had a friend hang a ceiling fan for us the other day and wouldn’t take any payment so the next week when I made lasagna I made a batch for him. As a single man he was very appreciative.

  5. Sometimes just a simple smile & a “Hello, how are you today?” Can brighten someone’s day. I know this from experience. I’ve had bad days where all I seem to encounter are angry or impatient people. One person offering a smile & greeting really turned around my mood & day

  6. I work as a window clerk at the post office. We are near a large hospital and many of their employees come by on their lunch hour. When I see their ID badge, I always make a point to mention that my husband has had two surgeries at their hospital and what wonderful care he received. They always seem pleased and often mention how rare it is to hear a compliment~they usually just hear from people when they have a complaint! (That’s why I do it! I work with the public, too!)

  7. For a new mom or momma with toddlers – a bouquet of flowers with a note that says thank you for investing in our future. (or maybe a
    new coffee mug with a bag of caffinated coffee tucked inside.)

    A local school – drop off a dessert to the teacher’s lounge with a note that says thank you for investing in our future.

    The night shift at a local hospital – a snack basket with a note of thanks tucked inside.

    Custodian at any place of business – how about a note taped to the custodian’s door with a special thank you for all you do to keep this place shining.

    For our spouse – a Peppermint Patty left on their pillow, in their lunchbox or some place else special with a note that says “it ‘mint’ a lot when you_____.”

  8. On this Memorial Day, let’s not only thank and remember our service men and women, but also thank their spouses and children for their sacrifice. They generously give to our country and freedoms by picking up the slack when their spouse is deployed, doing all the parenting of their children, suffering through loneliness, and dealing with trauma and PTSD upon there return from war.
    Yes, we as civilians need to say and demonstrate our gratitude to those families now serving and never forget those who have walked in their boots before them . Fly our flag, God bless them and God bless America!

  9. I have quite a few girlfriends I text message daily. I often let them know that they are apprecited & precious to God and me. I also like to add smilies to notes at work.

  10. I leave the money for my lawn guys in an envelope and write Thank you or thank you very much or I appreciate you on the envelope. Sometimes I add a little extra money and I always leave bottles of water in a small cooler with ice. I live in TX and it gets very hot here!

  11. I’m an artist and art teacher, I have my kids draw pictures and deliver them to the hospital and area nursing homes. They as lso add a personal note on the back. I draw make little pictures, cards or crafts to give people a smile. I would like to do this for mail carrier tomorrow.

  12. As a teacher, we often think we are the ones who should be receiving the gifts. As a teacher of students with special needs, I know how hard the parents work 24/7. Just having someone to stop by who WANTS to spend time with their child and visit with their child, means an awful lot. Time and attention are price free and priceless!

  13. I write a lot of notes in pretty cards to say thank you. I make it a point to go out and thank the man who picks up our trash and recycling and give him occasional homebaked goodies. I love to sew and crochet, so I often make something handmade to give to someone to say thank you.

  14. Sometimes, or rather quite often, just a simple “Thank You” along with a sincere Hug will do more for a person than a gift. Key word here is sincere!

  15. Handwriting letters and thank you notes is such a lost art today with technology. I collect beautiful stationery and cards for any occasion to show appreciation, or to encourage those who provide service. It’s a tangible item that they may keep to bring a smile on another day when they need it.

  16. I live in the Midwest, so our summers are hot & our winters are cold. On scorching summer days, I pick up a few extra groceries & offer cold sports drinks to construction workers, mail carriers, & garbage collectors on my way home. On brutally cold winter days, I deliver hot chocolate to crossing guards, mail carriers, & snow removal crews. It is always appreciated! I have never had someone decline, & I often hear how much they needed it.

  17. My parents are residents in a small home for the elderly. They receive excellent care from a staff who are overworked and underpaid. I am so thankful for each of them and tell them so often. I also keep them in my prayers and on holidays give them a small gift-a small stocking filled with candy and lip balm at Christmas, a Valentine, a May Basket. etc. They are always so appreciative and amazed that someone was thinking of them..

  18. I always try to remember to compliment a new mother whether a coworker, friend, or stranger. It always makes them smile. I certainly remember how I struggled wondering if I was doing everything right! Mothers sometimes are not recognized for the foundations they lay in their children’s lives.

  19. My daughter’s scout troop recently toured our small town fire station, where all of the fire fighters are volunteers. At the end the girls presented the fire fighters with a box of cookies, thanking then not only for the tour, but also for their service to our community.

  20. Generally, being sincere causes me to choke up terribly, which probably embarrasses the recipient, defeating the purpose. So I have fallen to sending so very many notes. In this day and age of “junk” mail, I am hopefully a note is a cheerful, warming way to be remembered.
    I have had city clerks that have helped me through difficult transactions that have blown my mind with their efficiency; and I have been able to thank them for their diligence in understanding their jobs and being able to navigate their customers through a process. The surprised faces say it all that they rarely hear this comment, especially from someone on the other side of the counter.

  21. Leave a larger than normal tip for someone who waits on you at a restaurant. They work so hard with not much appreciation!

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