Sunday, May 23, 2010

The Week in Review

Theme: Women dispatched by God to share Christ – Through encouragement
2 Samuel 24:17, 24-25 (New International Version)

Encouragement means to prod, spur, urge. This verbalization is one that encourages you to attempt something. We must not give up on individuals. We must keep urging them on to being what God has in store for them to be - And we urge you, brothers, warn those who are idle, encourage the timid, help the weak, be patient with everyone. (1 Thes 5:14) What is the cost? – I have to be willing to take rejection, persecution, and ridicule, why? I will take it because it is more important to me that you see what God desires, than to have you like me. It is more important to urge you on than my own personal comfort. I do like David did, like Christ did, I love you so much that I am willing to stand in the place of hurt and pain so that you can be saved. Are you that kind of encourager?

Encouragement means to give a vote of confidence. This is outwardly putting your trust in someone. We must allow people to see that we have faith in them. – encourage your hearts and strengthen you in every good deed and word (2 Thes 2:17). What is the cost? – I will trust in what God is doing in you. I will not try to make you into a “mini-me”. I will encourage you to follow Christ and to become all that God has said you can become. I will encourage you and let you know that I am here cheering you on. Like a small child taking his first step, when you let go and start to walk, I’ll be there cheering you own. My presence, my words, my life journey will serve to be the reminder that I trust what God is doing in you.

Encouragement is the act of giving hope or support to someone. We must be willing to make the sacrifice to support people where they are, and help them to gain hope in what God can do. We must take upon us the cares of the world, but not so that we can hold them, but so that we can carry them to Christ, the one that can bear our burdens. We must simply become the avenue for them to get there. We have to be like the man that was told to help Jesus carry his cross. He had to walk the distance and carry the cross with him. We must be willing to make the sacrifice to help someone carry their cross. - learn to do right! Seek justice, encourage the oppressed. Defend the cause of the fatherless, plead the case of the widow. (Isaiah 1:17) The cost is being willing to be poured out wine and broken bread. We become what the weak feed from. We must be willing to feed those that are not able to feed themselves. And when we do, yes we will get tired sometimes, but God says, come back, get filled, and go do it all over again.

Encouragement is a morale builder. We must become the one that others feel lifted through. We must be that sight that encourages others, that “sight for sore eyes”. It’s like looking out the window and seeing the beautiful flowers in bloom. It has a way of picking up your spirits. We must be the bouquet of God. We are all different but with one purpose to be a sweet smell in the nostril of God and a sweet smell to those around us. And when they walk away, will our fragrance, the fragrance of God still linger upon them? - Because of my chains, most of the brothers in the Lord have been encouraged to speak the word of God more courageously and fearlessly. (Phil 1:14) What is the cost? I must be that living example even in the midst of my trials. When my trials come, I must not whine and pout, but I must show forth the valor and bravery that others need to see. I must be willing to count it all joy. Not joy because it feels good, but because God is using me in this time and place to grow me and encourage others in the process.

I always thank my God as I remember you in my prayers, because I hear about your faith in the Lord Jesus and your love for all the saints. I pray that you may be active in sharing your faith, so that you will have a full understanding of every good thing we have in Christ. Your love has given me great joy and encouragement, because you, brother, have refreshed the hearts of the saints. – Philemon 4-7

This scripture sums up our missions. We should remember each other in prayer as we hear about how others are about the Lord’s business. Our prayer for each other should be for us to be active in sharing our faith. Our love will make others rejoice and be encouraged on this walk. Do you know when you are faithful doing the will of the Lord that you can refresh the hearts of the saints? You become an encouragement to others.

Let us be reminded of what great gift we have been given. Let us also remember that in order for us to receive this gift of salvation, there was a great cost. Are you willing today to take upon yourself the great cost of encouraging someone else? Are you willing to give your time, your money, your prayers and your efforts? Let us stand pray.