Thursday, October 13, 2016

Daily Encouragement (Part 2)

…and let us consider how to stimulate one another to love and good deeds, not forsaking our own assembling together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another; and all the more as you see the day drawing near. (Hebrews 10:23-25)

While the joy of the Lord truly sustains and strengthens us, there are times when we all need encouragement.  This world is hard, especially on Christians.  Elijah, Jonah and Job were at times suicidal.  Paul, Jeremiah, and even Jesus had to deal with the sorrow of watching people destroy themselves, reject God, and reject His truth. Simply put…we all need encouragement
It's not always easy to walk by faith in difficult times.  It's not always easy to obey God as we know we should.  It's not always easy to live according to God’s will for our lives.  Sometimes we need some help...a little motivation to do what we know is right, to stand up for what we believe, or to spread His Word throughout the whole world.  We each need to be encouraged.
Encouragement is awesome.  It can actually change the course of another person's day, week, or life.  If you think for a moment, you will find that the people who influence you are the people who believe in you most, who encouraged you.  There are high spots in all of our lives and most of them have come about through the encouragement of someone who cared for us. I don't care how great, how famous or successful a man or woman may be, each hungers for encouragement. Correction does much, but encouragement does even more.
The gift of encouragement is one of the most beautiful gifts in the world.  When someone encourages you, that person helps you over a threshold you might otherwise never have crossed on your own.  At the time of the writing of Hebrews, there was life-threatening persecution.  Our tendency during such trying times would be to save our skin or “to each his own.”  But the book of Hebrews encourages us to encourage one another.
To encourage is to inspire another with courage.  There are days that are difficult to face because we know there will be obstacles throughout the day.  A word from someone who believes in us and knows our strengths brings energy to fight through the difficult times.
Hebrews 3:13 speaks of the need to make a habit of encouragement.  But encourage one another day after day, as long as it is still called "Today," so that none of you will be hardened by the deceitfulness of sin.  The word “encourage” is in the present tense.  It indicates a habit or a way of life.  It is also in the active voice.  It means we don’t wait for others to encourage us but we take the initiative.  We must encourage even if others do not reciprocate.  
Note that we are to “encourage one another”.  It is not uncommon to find our own lives encouraged as we encourage others.  The very words we use cause us to look upon our own lives from a more positive direction.  It also, however, works in reverse.  Speaking words of discouragement discourages us! 
Someone wrote, “People live by encouragement.  Without it they die. Slowly... Sadly... Bitterly.”  It’s a fact that we need encouragement and that those around us need it as well.  Be an encourager today.  Your words can change a life.

Scripture to Claim:

Therefore encourage one another and build up one another, just as you also are doing.
(1 Thessalonians 5:11)

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