In any given day we get enough news and have enough experiences that are discouraging. Seldom do we hear good news concerning our society or world. It’s bad news upon bad news.
So, like worry, we have a choice about what to focus on and that is worked out through our self-talk. What we tell ourselves affects our beliefs and attitude. In fact, some of what we say to ourselves reflects our current beliefs and attitude about who we are and, will over time create an attitude toward ourselves. This attitude, if it is negative will express itself by how we talk to others.
Ephesians 4:2 Be completely humble and gentle; be patient, bearing with one another in love. Here we are told to do all we can to look past the faults of others and respond with gentleness, patience and humility. This can be daunting because we naturally respond to someone who offends us in kind. This of course affects relationships.
There is one way of responding to negative and hurtful people and that is to speak encouraging words. 1 Thessalians 5:11 Therefore encourage one another and build each other up, just as in fact you are doing. Here we are called to come along side someone and offer support. If we continue reading, vs. 14 And we urge you, brothers, warn those who are idle and disruptive, encourage the disheartened, help the weak, be patient with everyone, appears to be referring to those who are unable to help themselves.
To be an encourager you must have an optimistic attitude. Encourager means: a tendency or disposition to expect the best possible outcome or to dwell on the most hopeful aspect of a situation. (American Heritage Dictionary). Encouragement is to inspire, to continue on a chosen course; to impart courage or confidence. It means recognizing the other person as having worth and dignity; listening in a way that tells them you are listening and understanding. Encouragers will look for undeveloped abilities in another and help them discover and develop them.
If you know someone who needs encouragement begin praying for them, seek God’s direction on what to do or say at the right time and correct way. Know also there will always be people who will not respond favorably. Romans 14:19 Let us therefore make every effort to do what leads to peace and to mutual edification. 12:18 If it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone.
Being an encourager can lift up someone’s spirit, emotions and attitude at just the right time. We never know sometimes how our words or simple acts of kindness can impact another’s life for the better.
Pr. Bob Snitzer
By the Way: Today 4:30 Confirmation.
5:45 Deacon meeting; 6:30 Council meeting.
Sunday 17, 9:00 Morning worship. Sermon: God’s Justice Amos 5:7-15
10:15 Sunday school for all ages.
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