A Walking Encourager

September 8, 2016
by Rob Price

Joshua 1:9b – Be strong and courageous. Do not be terrified; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go. (NIV)

In today's broken world, there is an ongoing deficit of hope, and it would seem that the need for encouragement and a true sense of self-worth is one of the greatest threats facing the world. Typically, I would not have given much thought to the value of being encouraged by someone else and the liberating power that a kind word brings. This week, however, I have had somewhat of an epiphany in this area.

Many of my close friends have come to me with various heartaches and struggles that life has brought across their paths, some of which were so traumatic that I was left without any words to soothe them. No matter how frantically I searched for a positive word to give, or a bit of counsel to set them back on a more hopeful path, all I could possibly do was listen and try to empathize with their situation. Now, those who know me — I mean really know me — are aware that I am a chatterbox. Very rarely will I run out of words to say to someone who is in pain or dealing with a life circumstance, but this week was different. How do you possibly tell someone who has a terminal illness just to be positive because life always works itself out? Or how do you tell someone who is losing everything they own because of a job loss, to trust that there are plenty of jobs on the market, and surely they will eventually find another job. You don't, because encouraging someone in a time of need goes deeper than positive affirmation and a call to be strong and endure the ride.

As a believer, I know that God wants me to help those in times of need and to encourage those who are broken. However, where does one begin to walk out that call? I believe that it starts with today's Scripture, one of the most dynamic verses in the Bible. It tells us that we are to be strong and courageous because the Lord is with us no matter what we go through, or where we are in life. What this Scripture tells me is that all believers have the God of the universe walking with them through every trial and dark place imaginable, so there is no need to fear. How refreshing this message is to my soul!

Instead of trying to fix our friends, family, or loved ones with positive statements or false claims of hope, why not encourage them in God's love for them? Because of that love He will never leave us or forsake us. Let's be an example of God's love and encouragement to others by walking hand in hand with them through their pain, because that is what God does for His creation.

Today, you can become a walking encourager by showing others God's unwavering love and commitment to them. Ask the Lord daily to show you how you can encourage someone who may be shattered by life, and watch as the Lord uses you to heal and lift up those who have lost hope.

Prayer: Dear Father God, help us be agents of encouragement and love. Help us to be open to Your Spirit and Your direction when dealing with others. Give us the boldness to love by our actions and not just by our words. In Jesus' name, we pray. Amen.

About the author:

Rob Price <robprice33@gmail.com>

Conroe, Texas, USA


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1 Comment

  • PresbyCan Feedback says:

    Thanks for the good word Rob.


    Thank you Rob. Your words focus me once again on His word.


    Rob, thank you for such an encouraging devotional. Blessings.


    I would like some of the scriptures you refer to about God always being with us. I really enjoyed your words.
    (B.C.)


    Hey Rob,
    God’s love expressed is life’s paramount imperatives! Thanks for the encouragement.
    Blessings in Christ (who is Love incarnate)!


    Dear Rob,
    Your words are so wonderful, so true and so very on target for a hurting world and the people in it.
    Thank you for this “Daily”.


    Rob, thank you for this devotional. It spoke to me where I am today — also trying to listen and help those dealing with heartbreaking situations. I am forwarding your devotional to 2 friends with cancer. God Bless you for sharing HIS message through you!


    Thank you for this message Rob. My experience has been that sometimes there is no hope. When that is the situation, such as with a terminal illness, all we can do is standby and witness to our faith which tells us Jesus has dominion over death. Just being steadfast is all that is humanly possible.
    Blessings.


    Dear Rob,
    Greetings to you. Thank you so much for today’s devotion message.
    It was received with graciousness! Truly you have said it all.
    May the dear Lord bless you as you continue to write these devotions to stimulate readers like me.


    Rob,
    Last evening I learned of the death of a relative and today I must go to the visitation to offer some hope and support. Your message is very timely indeed. Thanks for making a difficult situation a bit easier… “the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go” says it all.
    Blessings.


    Hello Rob from Canada:
    Your message rings a very familiar note with me. My daughter tells me of her problems and difficulties. When I try to sympathize and tell her of others’ problems, or other ways of looking at things, she comes back with – “Can’t you just see my side of the story?” Or in other words – just listen.
    I’m trying hard to do just that.
    Thanks for your messages.


    Hi Rob,
    Encouraging words, however.. I am a Pastoral Care Volunteer at the local Long Term Care Centre. One of the residents lost a daughter a year ago, and this past week one of her sons died. I plan to see her tomorrow, and it will indeed hard be hard to tell her that everything will be alright, but I do hope that I will be an encouragement to her during this dificult time.
    Thank you for writing.


    Dear Rob,
    God doesn’t promise us good times, but He promises to be with us in good and bad times.
    May the Holy Spirit bless and comfort you as you minister to these situations.


    Hello Rob – thank you for your message. That scripture passage was just what I needed to read. My husband recently passed away from cancer — he had lived for two years with this although the average time people get is only one year or less.
    I believe my prayers and all those who prayed for him had an impact on the success of the chemo treatments in controlling the tumor. Fortunately, the chemo he received was not awful.
    I felt strong the day of the funeral and know that God was with us. Now I am struggling — in tears off and on and trying to cope with all that needs to be taken care of — it is overwhelming! Even though I knew what the outcome would be, I realize that I was not ready/prepared to accept that he is gone and I guess no one ever is. I know it will take time and I have lots of support from my family and my church family. I will continue to pray.


    Fear not for God with you always Amen.


    Dear Rob Price,
    Thanks for your devotional encouraging others to be a walking encourager.
    Some people actually have joy, as Jesus had, as they look forward to death. Some of Jesus’ joy could have been that he was looking forward to seeing all of his believing people with him in heaven for eternity.
    Keep writing.

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