Better Together | Through Encouragement

“Therefore if you have any ENCOURAGEMENT from being united with Christ, if any comfort from his love, if any common sharing in the Spirit, if any tenderness and compassion, then make my joy complete by being like-minded, having the same love, being one in spirit and of one mind.”
Philippians ‭2:1-2 ‭NIV‬‬
We live in a challenging perfectionist society where we are in a quest for “zero defect.” We call it the “Rat Race”. We are surrounded by an overwhelming number of fake and often unrealistic finish lines: If our body looks a certain way, if we drive a certain car, if we live at a particular address or socialize with these exclusive people, then we have won the race. Because of these unrealistic expectations, it is not unusual for people to feel irrelevant, overwhelmed, discouraged and depressed. But when challenges and setbacks come into our lives, we can be encouragers. Paul encouraged his churches and shared a message of encouragement particularly to the people of Phillipi. If we want to be like the Apostle Paul, here are a few modern phrases of encouragement we can offer:
“You’re doing a great job even though you think no one notices.”
“Don’t worry, you may have missed it this time, but you can try again.”
“I really believe you can do it – even if you don’t believe in yourself.”
“Great Job! Thanks for the hard work!”
“I know it’s a big challenge, but I’m praying for you.”
“You’re not alone – I’ll be here for you!”
“I will always love you! It doesn’t matter if you try and fail.”
You can probably think of more encouraging phrases. Feel free to share some with me 🙂 The secret is to find ways to encourage our loved ones with notes, calls, cards, verses, emails, snap chats or instant messages. Give someone this week a pat on the back, a word of recognition, prayer support or a look that says, “I believe in you!” In a society where people are quick to criticize and condemn, let’s let our mouths speak differently. May we this week share encouragement with others. May we be a people of a God that reminds the world that we are “better together.”
In Christ’s Love and Service,
Pastor Paul

Questions To Consider:
1.What is one negative thing someone said or did to me this week. Why did it discourage me?

2.When is a time recently that someone encouraged you? How did that change your day?

3.When is a time recently you encouraged someone else? What did you say or do?

4.Name three people you should encourage this week in your life.