BE AN ENCOURAGER—IT’S CATCHING!
If your gift is to encourage others, be encouraging.
— Romans 12:8
Yes, it’s true. One of the spiritual gifts of the Holy Spirit is that of encouragement (Romans 12:8) and when it is used wisely—even spontaneously—it can make all the difference in someone’s life! And yes, it’s also true that even if you don’t have that indwelling gift, God will still use you to bless someone else—because encouragement is catching. All you have to do is look for an opportunity.
I was leaving the doctor’s office this week and as I got to the door I noticed a lady behind me. So, still remembering my dad’s admonition when growing up to always hold the door open for a lady—I did. She rewarded me with a kind “thank you” and “have a nice day!” I don’t know why exactly but I continued with, “I will, because this is the day that the Lord has made. We will rejoice and be glad in it” (Psalm 118:24).
She looked up at me with a big smile and said, “Thank you. That’s just what I needed to hear today.” Now I don’t know her history. Perhaps she had just gotten word from her doctor that she was not doing well. Or perhaps she was thinking of someone else in her family. At any rate, she was encouraged by what I said.
Encouragement works in many ways. Today, for example, I received a note from a friend in India. We don’t correspond on a regular basis but he’s a ministry prayer partner and knows I am going through some physical challenges right now—so he wrote me this note of encouragement with a Scripture:
“Hello Pastor Don. Greetings to you and warm regards.
‘Praise God I will be glad and rejoice in Your unfailing love, for You have seen my troubles, and You care about the anguish of my soul’ (Psalm 31:7).
Good morning and love from India. Great day.” — John
I replied with a favorite Scripture that came to me two days after I had gotten out of the hospital in July: “I know that I will live to see the Lord’s goodness in this present life. Trust in the Lord. Have faith. Do not despair. Trust in the Lord” (Psalm 27:13-14 GNT).
John quickly replied again: “It was so good to hear from you Pastor Don and about your treatment as well. I am thankful to God for He is hearing and answering my prayers. And for sure, I believe that God will heal you completely and use you as a channel of blessings for others. Our God never keeps anything incomplete, He will complete it in His time. And for your treatment He will say, ‘It is finished’ (John19:30). Very soon in Jesus Name. Amen. Our prayers are always there for you. We’ll keep 8 November (day of PET scan) in our prayers as well. Thanks for the encouraging word. It was so good to talk to you, Pastor Don.” — John
Truly the Scripture is true when it says, “Whoever brings blessing will be enriched, and one who waters will himself be watered” (Proverbs 11:25 – ESV). I want you to know that I got “watered” today just as I have from so many special friends like you on a regular basis. Thank you all so much.
So dear saints, make it a point and go out of your way to encourage someone today—you may never know that it will be just what they needed to hear! Maranatha!
So encourage each other and build each other up, just as you are already doing. — 1 Thessalonians 5:11
Let us not give up the habit of meeting together, as some are doing. Instead, let us encourage one another all the more, since you see that the Day of the Lord is coming nearer. — Hebrews 10:25