by: Jeff Schreve
But encourage one another day after day, as long as it is still called "Today," lest any one of you be hardened by the deceitfulness of sin.
A few years ago, I was going through a rough patch in life. It seemed as if everyone was against me. My main job at that time was trying to keep the 50% of the people who didn’t like me away from the 50% who were not sure. (I’m joking of course, but it felt that way.) During those dark days, I would sit down to read my mail and often find anonymous letters full of discouragement. Have you ever been there? Have you ever experienced a host of discouraging voices?
As I was sinking into the pit of despair, a dear friend of mine spoke into my life. He said, “Jeff, quit focusing on those people who are upset at you, and start focusing on the people who love you. So what if you had three people gripe and complain about you this morning. You have over a thousand who are pleased with you and the job you are doing. Focus on them!”
That was GREAT advice. That was an encouraging word. That was a message I needed to hear.
God makes it clear in His Word that we are to encourage one another each and every day. We are to speak wholesome words that edify and build up, not rotten words that discourage and tear down (Ephesians 4:29). Encouragement can make all the difference in the world to someone who is struggling. Mark Twain once said, “One compliment can keep me going for a whole month.” WOW! There is power in an encouraging word!
Perhaps you are not much of an encourager. Perhaps you tend to see the negatives and not the positives. Perhaps you are a perfectionist who is never really pleased enough with anything or anyone to voice a word of encouragement. Well, perhaps you need to change! God wants you to start encouraging people. He wants you to start TODAY!
NOTES, CALLS, MEETINGS
How can you obey Hebrews 3:13 today? Why not start with an encouraging note, or e-mail, or text, or phone call to a friend or loved one? Why not go into a work associate’s and brag on him/her for a job well done? Why not sit down with your child and brag on his/her good qualities. Why not sit down with your wife and let her know how much you appreciate her for all she does? (Why not say it with flowers?) Why not sit down with your husband and brag on his sacrifice in providing for the family? (Why not say it with lingerie? Man, I hope my wife reads this!)
And while you are at it, start encouraging yourself! Fill your mind with words of faith and victory. Practice Philippians 4:8, “Finally, brethren, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is of good repute, if there is any excellence and if anything worthy of praise, let your mind dwell on these things.” You are someone who is special and precious to God. He has great and wonderful plans for you. Believe it and receive it this day! BE ENCOURAGED, in Jesus’ name!
Pastor Jeff Schreve,
From His Heart Ministries