Encourage One Another
by Karen Scott
I believe encouraging people is the most important thing we can do. When I was young my parents divorced and it impacted my life greatly. I went from a two parent home to a single parent home, then to a multi-family home. I'll never forget the feeling of uncertainty I had. After my parents split, my mom did the best she could to raise my brother and me. It was hard and she struggled. I remember at certain points she worked three jobs. With her job experience and skill set it was something nearly impossible to do alone, especially since she wanted the best environment for us. We lived in low income housing for a while and my mom made the tough decision to move in with family: my grandmother, my aunt, and my two uncles. However, by doing so my mom had childcare and she could go to work in peace to provide for my brother and me. All of those changes were difficult.
My grandmother instilled in all of her grandkids that God is the ultimate provider. I remember a song my grandmother used to sing, I Shall Not be Moved, Like a Tree Planted by the Water. I'll never forget the feelings of unease, hurt, and disbelief when my grandmother passed. As I was writing her obituary I suddenly realized that it was okay. She'd been preparing me for this all along by encouraging me to trust in the Lord with all my heart and lean not on my own understanding. In addition to my grandmother influencing my faith, I would have to add my mom and a host of strong women in my family, church, and the community also.
Again, I believe encouraging people is the most important thing we can do. When you offer someone a smile, a word of hope, or sincere concern, it could be the deciding factor on their outlook, mood, and how they may treat the next person who needs encouragement.
I know it helped me years ago when I felt so uncertain. I also know it was encouragement that got me where I am today.
1 Thessalonians 5:11
“Therefore encourage one another and build one another up...”