This morning I’ve been meandering around FaceBook…noticing oh-so-very-many encouraging posts. This—the encouragement—is a wonderful use of social media such as FaceBook, don’t you think? Encouragement comes in MANY different forms; for example,
- beautiful photographs of God’s gorgeous Creation that are shared
- quotes that nurture our souls and motivate us to go and do
- prayers that are offered to sisters in need
- and (my favorites!) Scriptures that you post to remind another of God’s goodness, His grace and mercy, His faithfulness, and His love.
It is through the history depicted in the Scriptures that we come to know so much about our great God and His heart for all mankind.
For whatever was thus written in former days was written for our instruction, that by [our steadfast and patient] endurance and the encouragement [drawn] from the Scriptures we might hold fast to and cherish hope.
Now may the God Who gives the power of patient endurance (steadfastness) and Who supplies encouragement, grant you to live in such mutual harmony and such full sympathy with one another, in accord with Christ Jesus,
That together you may [unanimously] with united hearts and one voice, praise and glorify the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ (the Messiah).
Truly it is by and through the Scriptures that our hearts and minds are encouraged. In the Bible we read of God’s promises, we hear of the Hope of eternity spent with Him (and each other) in His Kingdom, we learn of our Father’s unconditional love. All intended to encourage us!
Here are definitions for the words encourage and encouragement from Webster’s 1828 dictionary:
ENCOUR’AGE, v. enkur’rage.
- To give courage to; to give or increase confidence of success; to inspire with courage, spirit, or strength of mind; to embolden; to animate; to incite; to inspirit.
- Emboldened; inspirited; animated; incited.
- The act of giving courage, or confidence of success; incitement to action or to practice; incentive.
Each of us knows by experience…some more than others, it is true…that there are days when we simply feel that we don’t have the courage to endure. There are times when the stresses and pressures of this world cause our little hearts to cave and we doubt we can handle them. There are life situations that we struggle through worrying and being overwhelmed at times. These are all situations and circumstances in which we must find a way to seek the One Who has made us promises, the One Who is faithful, the One Who loves us unconditionally…the One Who desires to encourage each one of us!
There is SO MUCH that is good and joyful and righteous and blessed and a blessing to think about! When we set our thoughts on THESE things, we will be encouraged!
whatever is true,
whatever is noble,
whatever is right,
whatever is pure,
whatever is lovely,
whatever is admirable—
if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—
think about such things.
It is our’s and our’s alone…a constant choice we have to work towards being encouraged! We are not alone in this! We have each other…we have the Scriptures…we have Jesus…we have the Holy Spirit…and we have God Almighty! We CAN do this! We can become encouraged and live with joy and rejoicing! So…
Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, rejoice!
Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication
with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God.
And the peace of God, which surpasses all comprehension, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.
Philippians 4:4, 6and7
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My prayer and desire for each of us:
Let us hold unswervingly to the hope we profess, for He who promised is faithful.
And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds…
but encouraging one another—and all the more as you see the Day approaching.