5 Ways To Encourage One Another

There are at least 30 different scripture passages in the epistles that use the words encourage, encouraged or encouragement. The Bible does not turn a deaf ear to the pressures of life. Our need for encouragement springs from the day to day pressures and the brokenness of the world in which we live.

Listen to these verses:

Therefore encourage each other with these words. (1 Thessalonians 4:18 NIV)

Therefore encourage one another and build each other up, just as in fact you are doing. (1 Thessalonians 5:11 NIV)

But encourage one another daily, as long as it is called Today, so that none of you may be hardened by sin’s deceitfulness. (Hebrews 3:13 NIV)

Let us not give up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but let us encourage one another–and all the more as you see the Day approaching. (Hebrews 10:25 NIV)

If encouraging one another is such a prominent topic in scripture, how can you do a better job?

Here are 5 ways you can encourage brothers and sisters in Christ:

  1. Write a note or an email – share something that can be held saved
  2. Call on your phone – let them hear your voice
  3. Help the hurting – do something to relieve the pressure
  4. Practice the power of presence – be there
  5. Tell people how they have encouraged you – build people up

It’s time to be a doer of the word. Don’t read this and forget about it. Do something today to encourage someone.

Do you have any other ideas or tips to help us encourage one another? Join the conversation and share them with us.

Grace and Peace,

Terry

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What Does The Fruit Of Love Taste Like?

Love is placed first in the characteristics of the fruit of the Spirit. In scripture it is pointed to as the greatest virtue of our lives as followers of Jesus (1 Corinthians 13; Ephesians 5:1-2; Colossians 3:12-14). The Spirit produces the fruit of love which should fill your life.

God pours out his love into your heart and you enjoy its effect in and on your life. As you yield yourself to Christ, the Spirit produces love in you just like that which you received from the Father. The Holy Spirit lives in your heart and makes you more and more like Jesus and the fruit matures. Now others can have a taste of God’s love through you.

When others eat the fruit of love which the Spirit produces in you, it has the very flavor of God’s love. Here are some descriptive terms as to what the fruit of love tastes like from 1 Corinthians 13:

  • caring for me more than I sometimes care for myself
  • patience when I am irritating
  • kindness when I am undeserving
  • sharing me when others need me
  • humility when you could be strutting your stuff
  • forgetting the pain I cause
  • forgiving my sin
  • picking me up when I get knocked down
  • dancing with me when I am victorious
  • protecting me when I am vulnerable
  • trusting in me
  • hope
  • faithfulness that never gives up on me

And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love. – 1 Corinthians 13:13 NIV

Who are some people who need a taste of the fruit of love from your basket? They may be in your one another community. They may be your neighbors.

Grace and Peace,

Terry

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Sharing Life and Love – Mom Got It Right

This is a gust post from Kerre Thorne. Kerre seeks to actively live a life on mission with Jesus. In addition to being a great wife and mother, she is my daughter. I was thrilled when she agreed to write a post in honor of her mother (and my wife) Beth.

Beth and Kerre

In Elementary school my brother and I were blessed with friends who’s mothers treated us like their own. Even when I was at a sleep over I always had a mommy hug before bed, but I think our friends had it even better than us! My mom always became more than “my” mom when my friends were around. Everyone was loved and cared for (and from time to time punished) equally. At a young age I learned to share my mommy with others who needed her just as much as I did. Her hugs were wide spread!

As my brother and I got older the concept stayed the same. Reflecting on my teen years, I don’t always remember mothers of my friends that loved me as much as my own did. There were even sad times when my friends moms didn’t seem to love my friends as much I think a mother should. Luckily God gave those friends to me… not because of their families, but because of mine. Especially because of my Mom.

I never gave too much thought to sharing my mother’s love. It was always a natural occurrence and not one that bothered me, but one that I was overly proud of. Her kitchen or living room floor were always open to any friend that needed food and a place to crash, and her arms were always open to a child that needed her love and support.

Beth, Kerre and David circa 1979

I’m grown now, with a 2 year old and a baby on the way and not much has changed. Except that instead of a lot of extra “hey Mom’s” it’s now more often “Mamoo” (our families version of Grandmother). I’m always more than thrilled to walk into my parents house to gather with the church on Sunday’s and Tuesday’s and watch her arms fill up with hugs from little ones that have come to know her as their own.

Even before our simple church experiences Mom “got it.” The concept was never something that she had to learn. And I’m so blessed that she worked to instill it in me. Community and family and sharing life and love. That’s what my Mom has always done and could probably never not do!

Thank you Mommy for loving my friends as much as you love me!

Kerre

Taming My Tongue

I have trouble with my tongue. How about you? I do pretty well in public but so very often sin pours out of my mouth at home like the flood gate behind the dam.

Get your coffee ready and watch the following video . . .

Even if you don’t read the Bible you know that your tongue is a dangerous thing.

My tongue . . .

  • betrays me
  • reveals bitterness in my heart
  • wounds others
  • destroys relationships
  • curses
  • lies
  • grumbles
  • gossips

With the tongue we praise our Lord and Father, and with it we curse men, who have been made in God’s likeness. Out of the same mouth come praise and cursing. My brothers, this should not be. Can both fresh water and salt water flow from the same spring? My brothers, can a fig tree bear olives, or a grapevine bear figs? Neither can a salt spring produce fresh water. [James 3:9-12 NIV]

It doesn’t have to be this way. Because I am a Christ follower I have the Holy Spirit living in me. He gives me the power to tame the beast that lives in my mouth and he heals the sick heart that it reveals.

Lord, may my tongue speak of your righteousness and of your praises all day long.

Grace and Peace,
Terry

Join the Conversation: Any tips to help us tame our tongues and how we can make them instruments of grace?

8 Reasons to Eat Chili

Last night I spent the evening with a lot of people I don’t know (but my wife does). I went to the PTA fundraiser – a Chili Cook-off. I even took a pot of chili. There are at least 8 reasons why eating chili was pretty cool.

  1. Linking – I was able to link with Beth in her efforts to build relationships with people, many of whom need a walk with Christ.
  2. Linking – I was able to be in close proximity with a large number of people in Beth’s circle of influence. People will seldom come to us so we need to go to the places they frequent.
  3. Loving – Linking with my wife in this mission strengthened our relationship with one another. It showed that I value her and her work and was a way to publicly express my love for her.
  4. Loving – I was able to be loving toward the members of Beth’s teaching team by making and bringing their chili entry.
  5. Listening – I was able to visit with several people, centering the conversation on them and listening to them.
  6. Looking – Being aware that God is always working, I was able to see his activity in the lives of some of the people I met.
  7. Linking – We’re going out to dinner with a couple next week.

Let me encourage you to find some time to join some fellow believers (maybe your own family members) and connect with some people you may not know very well. Spend some time listening to them and look to see where God is working. Who knows what doors of ministry might open.

Oh, I almost forgot #8 – I Like Chili!

Grace and Peace,
Terry

Join the Conversation: Have you recently intentionally gone any place to be in close proximity with people with whom you can build relationships? What were the results?