How Do We Encourage One Another?
By Marie Traister
Encouragement is the action of giving someone support, confidence or hope. Encouragement is given to stimulate and inspire someone. If we do not have encouragement, we feel unappreciated, useless and unloved. Our Heavenly Father knows that we are in great need of encouragement. Thirty-two times in the New Testament we are told to encourage one another. (Heb 3:13, Rom 15:5, Prov 12:25, Is 41:10, 2 Cor 4:16-18, Deu 31:8) Encouragement “boosts performance, strengthens our resolve, and improves our health.” (1)
Being an encourager doesn’t come naturally for most of us but, for a believer, it’s not an option…when we encourage others, we are reflecting the heart of God.” (2) So encouragement comes from our heart and goes out to reach another’s heart(s). It does not necessarily have to be words; it can also be in the form of action.
Several years ago, when I was experiencing a harsh episode with my Lupus, I was laying on the living room sofa. I had thrown my blanket off of me when the fever had me hot and sweating but now the fever was leaving me chilled and wanting a cover. My mind kept telling my body that all I had to do was to pick up the blanket and cover myself to bring comfort but, no matter how many times I rehearsed that thought, my body would not react. I’m not sure how long I laid in that discomfort but that afternoon a knock came to the door. Looking through our nine-paned living room door, I saw that it was my friend, Gloria. (Gloria and her husband, Ken, were missionaries with Fairhaven Ministries in Roan Mountain, TN and she was also Camp Ta-Pa-Win-Go’s secretary in Elizabethton, TN where we were serving at the time.) I called for her to come in and she did. She took one look at me, set down the food that she had brought and came over to me, picked up my cover, and laid it on me. Then we spoke, I thanking her and she laying her hands on my forehead and praying for me. I certainly appreciated the prayer but, at that moment, Gloria’s simple act of placing the cover on me with tears in her eyes was so encouraging to me, for I knew she was attempting with her heart to “feel my pain” and with her actions to do what she could to support and bring me hope. God used her mightily that day to bring me SUPPORT and HOPE!
Is there someone that needs your encouragement today? How will you encourage them: will it be through your prayers, your words, your actions, or can you, like Gloria, use all three to encourage someone today? How will you encourage someone today?
- The Leadership Challenge, James Kouzes and Barry Z. Posner, 1987.
- Encouraging One Another, Nancy DeMoss Wolegemuth. www.ReviveOurHearts.com.
Written by Marie Traister is a part time CBM Missionary with the CBM National Office. To learn more CBM click https://childrensbibleministries.net