Be an Encourager!

An encourager is one who by definition inspires others with hope, courage or confidence.  Don’t you enjoy being around someone who is encouraging? Aren’t they like a breath of fresh air?

Perhaps you are naturally gifted in this area, and it’s easy for you to speak kindness and encouragement into those around you.  If on the other hand you are like me, and you tend to see all that’s wrong around us, you have to work at it some more.  Just like we work at being purposeful in our daily lives with our activities and goals, I would also like to propose that we be INTENTIONAL with choosing words of encouragement to be spoken to those around us.

Perhaps it’s our family members that need to know they are doing a good job, or that they are appreciated for their hard work – don’t just think those thoughts, be sure to speak them.

Maybe it’s a co-worker, classmate or sweet friend who is battling a difficult time – depression, cancer, loss of a mate, failing grades – what can you do to encourage them through this trial?  Maybe it’s just a verse of Scripture that means something special to you, or an inspiring quote that has been encouraging for you, will be just the thing that will encourage another person.

While each of us do not likely have the capacity to change the world, we do have the ability to change one person’s day.  The opportunity to bring a smile, squeeze a hand or give a hug for one person is something that can spur others to action as well.  In that small action, we do have the capacity to be world changers.  All it takes is a little thought, a bit of openness to share and encourage.  Be light to someone in your world today!

 

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The need for Hope

birds-800671_1280My favorite poem about Hope is from Emily Dickinson.  I recall my mom reciting the opening line, and then realizing later that I loved the whole poem.  Here it is

“Hope” is the thing with feathers – 
That perches in the soul – 
And sings the tune without the words – 
And never stops – at all – 
And sweetest – in the Gale – is heard – 
And sore must be the storm – 
That could abash the little Bird 
That kept so many warm – 
I’ve heard it in the chillest land – 
And on the strangest Sea – 
Yet – never – in Extremity, 
It asked a crumb – of me.

It has been said that Dickinson’s poetry has a similar style as the psalms and other religious hymns – perhaps that’s why I connect with her writing style.  It’s flow appeals to me, and her metaphor here speaks to me visually.

Hope in it’s simplest form is a bit shallow.

“I hope it rains tomorrow.”

“I hope my daughter buckles her seatbelt.”

“I hope you feel better.”

But if we dig a little deeper, hope can add an element of expectation.  When hope combines the idea of wanting something to happen with the idea of expectation, whether because of past results or sheer faith, Hope becomes so much more meaningful.

Today I want to encourage you with a word about Hope.

Daily life can drag us down.  Maybe you wake up like I do, with expectations of accomplishing a large number of things – my lists are long!  but somewhere after the day begins, I start to realize that I am a little too “hopeful” about how I am going to accomplish the day’s jobs – and I start to dwell in reality.  The task lists get rewritten, and I settle on a more manageable “list” for my day.

Reading the news can drag me down.  I try to get my news in small clips now – like twitter for instance.  Reading large amounts of news, hurts my spirit.  I just can’t do it.  There’s so little hope in our world, and because there is such little hope people turn to evil.  The evil is rampant and overwhelming.  I find that dwelling in the difficulties of our present our realities can bury me in discouragement and cause me to lose my focus.

Instead, I’m thankful for hope.  The deeper knowledge that there is something far greater beyond this life fuels me forward.  While there are many wonderful joys in this life, it cannot compare to the hope of our future in Glory.  We should share hope with those around us.  Not a flimsy, shallow hope though – let’s share the reason for our Hope – our expectation of a future more wonderful than we can even imagine.

Kind Words

Here’s what I envision friends – a community of women who build each other up, not tear each other down.  Finding opportunities to encourage each other in each season – reaching up to those who have travelled the path we are on already, and reaching back to bring someone along with us who isn’t where we are yet.  Arm in arm, hand in hand, not merely surviving this journey of life, but thriving!  Our words have so much power and we can do so much good, if we will be conscientious, yes intentional with them.  Look for opportunities to bless and to do good!  I hope you will connect with us not just here on the blog, but also on Facebook.  I look forward to providing content that gives you a boost whenever you need it and pray that God will use it to fulfill His purpose in each of us!  IMG_5188