What encourages you?
Are you encouraged when someone praises you? Or are you encouraged when someone gives you a gift?
Compliments and chocolate bring a certain level of encouragement and comfort to my heart (and to my stomach). But I notice that I reject the compliments of others in my head. I say “thank you” on the outside, but internally dismiss the compliment because I think things like: “well if they only knew the way I blew up at my toddler the other day, they wouldn’t think that I am a patient or calm mother.”
I write off encouragement from others and choose to dwell in my “self pity camp.” Why? Because I argue with myself. I easily dismiss what I say or feel.
But I cannot argue with God or His Word. His Words are true and eternal (John 17:17, Matthew 24:35). I cannot dismiss what He says or feels.
A couple of weeks ago, I felt discouraged. I retreated back to my “self pity camp.” While camping out I received one of those lovely email chain letters. You know the ones where you send a recipe etc. to the person at the top of the chain list. And then you add your name to the list and forward the email to 20 of your friends and so on.
Ok, I will be honest- I always delete these, because I am busy running the Universe. I simply do not have time for these things! (But then I start arguing internally with myself about how poorly I am running the Universe…and bam, I am back in my “self pity camp.” It’s a vicious cycle…)
Anyways, I am glad I opened the email and participated in the “Bible verse encouragement chain.” So far I have received 10 doses of encouragement from complete strangers over the past two weeks. These dear men and women took the time to email me a Scripture that encourages them when they are discouraged.
Compliments, cards, and chocolate bless me. But the Word of God encourages me like no other. I can’t argue with it, and neither should you. I pray that if you are discouraged, you would be encouraged by the following verses:
- 2 Peter 3:13 NIV~ “But in keeping with his promise we are looking forward to a new heaven and a new earth, where righteousness dwells.”
- Ephesians 1:19-21 NIV~ “and his incomparably great power for us who believe. That power is the same as the mighty strength he exerted when he raised Christ from the dead and seated him at his right hand in the heavenly realms, far above all rule and authority, power and dominion, and every name that is invoked, not only in this present age but also in the one to come.”
- Philippians 4:8 NIV~ “Finally, brothers and sisters, 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.”
- Jeremiah 32:17 NIV~ “Ah, Sovereign LORD, you have made the heavens and the earth by your great power and outstretched arm. Nothing is too hard for you.”
Maybe there is someone you need to pass a verse onto. The “Universe” can wait. This is one “chain” we should keep going…
“For everything that was written in the past was written to teach us, so that through endurance and the encouragement of the Scriptures we might have hope. May the God who gives endurance and encouragement give you a spirit of unity among yourselves as you follow Christ Jesus, so that with one heart and mouth you may glorify the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ.”
~Romans 15:4-6 NIV