Be very careful, then, how you live-not as unwise but as wise, making the most of every opportunity, because the days are evil. … Speak to one another with psalms, hymns and spiritual songs. Sing and make music in your heart to the Lord, always giving thanks to God the Father for everything, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.
Ephesians 5:15, 19-20, NIV*
I can’t stand sales team pep rallies. You know, the impassioned speaker who gets listeners “all fired up,” leads in a group cheer, and works them into such a frenzy of eagerness that they practically trip over each other on their way out the door to convince the world to buy what they’re offering.
We do need encouragement and motivation, especially in those occupations which encounter a lot of negativity or opposition, but I don’t know if hype is really the best way to provide it.
We also need encouragement and motivation in living the Christian life, whether we’re experiencing outright opposition or just the general wearing-down of daily stress. Again, spare me the theatrics.
St. Paul told us to be alert and intentional about how we live. He knew how easily we can miss opportunities or be distracted from the underlying battle, or even be distracted from God.
With all our busyness, it seems like we rush into and out of church or Bible study groups and never have time to encourage one another. Our pastors and leaders can only pack so much into a message or worship service.
Technology changes things. You’ll often find me listening to a worship CD or to K-LOVE to let the songs keep me focused, and I’m trying to share encouragement through this blog. But the first and best way involves actual human contact.
When we take time to hear one another, we can share a word, a prayer, a song. Nobody wants a pat, trite answer, but a Spirit-inspired bit of encouragement from one Christian to another can really help.
Father, thank You for Scripture, and for the way You speak through fellow believers. Please help us encourage one another with words from You. And help us keep silent when all we have is words from ourselves.
I’m thankful for so many strong Christian music artists who share encouragement. Here’s a song to keep us on track today, by Steven Curtis Chapman: “Not Home Yet“.
*New International Version (NIV) Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.
Thank you for this reminder. I read your blog faithfully, but usually don’t comment for whatever reason.
I do want you to know that I find your writings encouraging, thought provoking and uplifiting. Many times they hit home and really give me hope and a renewed spirit. Your writing is such a gift that you use well for the Lord.
Bless You ,
Thank you, Tammy. One of the things about writing is, you don’t often know how/if it was useful. Maybe that’s good, because it leaves the results to God, Who does know.
I guess this just isn’t one of those conversation-starting blogs (which saves time for everyone to chat elsewhere!) but I really appreciate your encouragement today.
“Hope and a renewed spirit” – that’s what I’m aiming for!