journal | spirituality

Being an Encourager

April 9, 2008

I am not good at encouraging. As a teacher, this was the one place that I always needed to show improvement. As a mom and a wife I struggle with this daily. It’s hard to see it in print, but it’s so true.

I wouldn’t say that I grew up in the most encouraging home. My parents were loving and I know they loved me, but it was a very “realistic” home. I wouldn’t say that we were encouraged to follow our dreams, but rather to be realistic about things. If we were hurt, I don’t remember being coddled much. I know that I am very much like my parents in this respect.

But, knowing all this and knowing my natural tendencies, I try very hard to be aware of it in my day to day interactions with my children, my husband and my friends. What is so amazing, is that God continually brings people and situations into my life to stretch me and grow me in this. I long to be one of those people that always knows what to do or what to say no matter what. I long to be one of those people who runs to help those in need or who are hurt. I long to be one of those people who reaches out to the crying person next to them…but it is so hard for me; it is so not my nature.

But God continually calls us to go against our nature. He continually puts us in places and situations where we aren’t comfortable. He tells us in His Word that we are basically going to rub up against the world, not with it.  The question is: Will I respond to His call to reach out into the broken or will I cower back because I’m not comfortable?

  1. Oh boy. I am just like you in this area. This is a subject that has been heavy on my heart for a few weeks now. I find the more I pray for God to give me courage in this area, He has. He has also put several situations in front of me that caused me to step out of my box.

    It has been really difficult at times, but after walking around a neighborhood handing out batteries to the wealthy, (a training ground experiment at church,) everything else seemed really easy!

    My advice, just start small and it will get easier with prayer and a step of faith.

    Blessings!

  2. On the flip side, Aimee…you can also help ground us dreamers by bringing in the realistic side. So, even if you think it may be a flaw, it is something that God can use regardless.

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