Encourage One Another – Be the one.
Therefore, encourage one another and build each other up, just as in fact you are doing. I Thessalonians 5:11
In I Thessalonians 5:9-11, I’m basically paraphrasing here, the people were getting a warning because the Christians were not all acting like children of the light, children of God. So, they were been told to act proper, as children of light for the reason the coming of the Lord will come like a thief at night unexpectedly. Supposedly, some were acting good and were encouraging others as it is mentioned in the scripture… “Therefore, encourage one another and build each other up, just as in fact you are doing.”
How many of you have ever heard someone say, “Sticks and stones may break my bones, but words can never hurt me”? Now, how many of you believe that words can’t hurt people. Words can hurt people. Most adults can remember something that was said to them when they were a child that hurt them; I know I can. But in the same way that words have the power to hurt, they also have the power to help and make us feel good. God wants us to use words to help others but in His Word!
So, what does the Bible have to say about encouragement? Biblical encouragement isn’t focused on complementing someone’s great looks, cars, their home, or their stylish fashionable haircut or how great their homemade salsa tasted. That kind of encouragement is known as “compliments” these are important, but the encouragement we all need is the Scriptures references, which are pure Christian encouragement; it’s life that we need. Biblical encouragement is shared with the hopes that it will lift someone’s heart toward the Lord. It points out evidence of mercy and grace in another’s life to help them see that God is using them. It points a person to God’s promises and it assures us all that HE is all-powerful, all-knowing and all-present and He is in control of everything even in encouragement.
1. Encouragement is shared with the hopes that it will:
- Lift someone’s heart back unto the Lord.
- It points out evidence of mercy and grace in the other person’s life to help them see that God is using them.
- It directs a person back to God’s promises and assures them that God is with them.
2. God commanded that his people encourage each other because he knows we need it. Jesus warned us.
- Ref. John 16:33 (NIV) “I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world, you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.”
We live in a confused, troubled, and broken world where everything around us calls toward selfishness and desperation. This behavior steals our joy, and within time our bodies begin to wear down, our families are grown and living their own lives, and we look back into our past or future plans that fade away and we lose sight of our perspective on life, and our future looks dim. We are told by many and through the word that we will have suffering (1 Pet. 4:12), Persecution (John 15:20; 2 Tim. 3:12), Trials of various kinds (James 1:2-3) in our Christian walk. As followers of Christ, it’s inevitable.
When encouragement is absent from our lives as Christians, we will feel unloved, unimportant, useless, unappreciated, disliked, and forgotten. God knows his people are in need of grace-filled friends. Pray for YHWH to send you more godly friends. Therefore, “Encourage one another daily, as long as it is called ‘Today,’ so that none of you may be hardened by sin’s deceitfulness.” (Heb. 3:13)
Pray to YHWH, that He can give you the wisdom and knowledge to be an encourager:
- Pray for God to make you an encourager. Ask him to give you a loving, patient heart and how to show it.
- Make encouragement a daily habit, as they say, practice makes perfect. For some of us, encouragement doesn’t come easily, but for others, it does, and they enjoy the presence of people around them.
- Pray for God to lead you to those needing encouragement. Ask God to bring someone to your mind that you can reach out to. These people are those around you like family, co-workers, and friends.
- Use biblical scriptures to encourage them with God’s promises.
Despite the misfortunes we may experience, there is always an opportunity to choose love and rise above resentment and fear. The Bible was created to remind us of such truth and to encourage us to believe in the goodness of life and YHWH. Pray that YHWH would create a culture of encouragement in your life. Ask God to make our life one that loves others in a specific, tangible way like encouragement. Ask God to use you to help fan that flame. Don’t get discouraged if people don’t return your encouragement. Ephesians 6:7-8 Serve wholeheartedly as if you were serving the Lord, not people because you know that the Lord will reward each one for whatever good they do, whether they are slave or free.
Galatians 6:9-10 (NIV) “Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up. Therefore, as we have opportunity, let us do good to all people, especially to those who belong to the family of believers.” Creating an atmosphere that glorifies God takes a long time, lots of prayers, and abundant grace. I encourage you to keep at it – don’t become weary. Ephesians 3:20-21 (NIV) Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, forever and ever! Amen.
“The Christian life is not a constant high. We may all have moments of deep discouragement. During that time, we all have to go to God in prayer with tears in my eyes, and say, ‘O God, forgive me,’ or ‘Help me.’” –Billy Graham