“Whither shall we go up? our brethren have discouraged our heart, saying, The people is greater and taller than we; the cities are great and walled up to heaven; and moreover we have seen the sons of the Anakims there.” ~Deuteronomy 1:28
I think all of us would agree that we like to be around someone who is an encourager. We are inspired and motivated when someone encourages us. Paul uses the metaphor of an encouraging father to describe how he discipled the believers at Thessalonica. However, this morning we are considering the importance of you and me being encouragers. Everyone around us is in need of encouragement, and some need it more than others. As an encourager, we are cheering another person on and letting them know, “You can do it!”
There is the ROLE of an encourager.
Anyone can be an encourager. The greater the role you have in another person’s life, the more meaningful is your encouragement. If you are a parent, teacher, counsellor, manager, supervisor, pastor, or spiritual leader, your role as an encourager is very important to those who are subordinate to you. They appreciate that you notice them and let them know when they do something good. They appreciate that you are investing in their lives. On the other hand, you are considered someone very special and different from the norm if you are an encourager to them. Joshua was appointed to be Moses’ successor. Joshua would lead the Israelites through battle in order to possess the land of promise. God knew the new leader would need encouragement. Moses told Israel, “Encourage him.” As an encourager, let us be sure we let the other person know, “You can do it!”
There is the RESPONSIBILITY of an encourager.
Paul best explained the responsibility of an encourager. “As ye know how we exhorted and comforted and charged every one of you, as a father doth his children.” First, through exhortation, we are convincing, reinforcing, persuading, and stimulating another person in their performance. Encouragement can be the difference between winning and losing. It is the difference between finishing and quitting. It is the difference between success and failure. Second, through comfort, we are letting the other person know they are not alone. When we put our arm around someone who is down and defeated, we never know just how badly they might need it. Words of comfort can hold a person together and keep him from falling apart. Third, when we charge someone this is when we are being their coach and showing them the way. As leaders, we need to know the way, go the way, and show the way.
There is the REWARD of an encourager.
Israel’s encouragement in Joshua instilled fresh confidence in him. Their encouragement helped him look forward to getting up and accomplishing something for God each day. Their encouragement made him a better person. Their encouragement got them all successfully into the land of promise. Our reward is the awareness we helped someone succeed. It is the satisfaction that we went beyond the call of duty to help someone be used greatly of God. I think of the encouragement my friend Dr. Mark Rasmussen gives to hundreds of pastors every Saturday evening when he sends a text that he is praying for them. His timely text messages or postcards helped a preacher preach with more power. His message helped a preacher who was facing a difficult trial. As an encourager, our blessing is the fact we are giving a boost to someone’s faith, fervency, and future.
Be an encouragement to someone today, but especially to someone you are subordinate to. Let the person you are encouraging know, “You can do it!”
Have an encouraging God Morning!