We live in a world that dispenses daily doses of negativity and discouragement. It’s difficult not to allow our mood and outlook to be affected. At an early age we learn the discouragement of not being picked for the team, feeling we are not good enough, being left out. For some it becomes fuel to improve, but for others it is defeating and defining. Add on the psychological implications of social media and the affect it has on a person’s self-worth and self-image, and we have the recipe for out and out doom and despair. When surrounded by so much negativity, we must learn how to stay positive. God loves to encourage the brokenhearted and those who are discouraged, and he calls us, as Christ-followers, to encourage others. The power of a simple word of encouragement can change someone’s life. Encouragement is powerful.
2 Co 7:5-6; He 3:13; Pr 3:27; Ro 1:10-12; He 10:24-25; 1 Sa 30:6; Pr 11:25
But encourage one another daily as long as it is “Today,” so that none of you may be hardened by sin’s deceitfulness. (He 3:13) Do not withhold good from those to whom it is due, when it is in your power to do it. (Pr 3:27) The generous will prosper; those who refresh others will themselves be refreshed. (Pr 11:25)
One of the greatest things you can do as a Christian is to encourage others. God wants to use you to make a difference in someone’s life, to make the world a better place. So, you have a choice to make each day…will you be a voice of encouragement or discouragement? Think of ways to encourage the people around you. If there is any way you can speak a word of encouragement, do it, say it. Christ-followers are to encourage one another spiritually, help each other grow in faith, cheer each other on. We need the fellowship of Christian brothers and sisters and the encouragement we can give and draw from one another. When you refresh others you also refresh yourself (Pr 3:27). We can also encourage ourselves in the Lord. What does this mean? It means meditating on God’s word, and remembering all that God has done for you. Focusing on Scripture and reflecting on all the times when God has pulled you through, stood by you, and given you strength in a difficult situation will help to encourage you and give you hope in your present situation. As God encourages you, you can also encourage others.
Who is the most encouraging person you know? Would your friends and family describe you as an encourager? How has/does God encourage you? How do others encourage you? How much does encouragement fuel you? Do you receive as much encouragement as you need?
Keep a journal and write down a few things each day. Write what is on your mind, what is troubling you, what you are praying for. After doing this for some time, you will be able to look back and see how God was working in your life and brought you through, how He answered prayer. Each day be determined to speak words of encouragement whenever you can to those around you.
Dear Lord, thank you for wanting the best for me and expecting the best from me. You encourage and refresh me through your creation, my friends, my family and through your word. Continue to remind me of all the times that you have stood by me and given me strength in difficult times. Thank-you for those who have marked my life by their encouragement and support. Help me to be the voice of encouragement in the lives of those around me. In Jesus Name I pray, amen!