WISDOM FOR LIVING DAILY DEVOTIONAL
NOVEMBER 20, 2022
TOPIC: ENCOURAGING EACH OTHER
BY T. O. BANSO
“So encourage each other and build each other up, just as you are already doing” (1 Thessalonians 5:11 New Living Translation).
We can’t overemphasize the truth that everybody needs encouragement. Yes, it is good to encourage yourself in the Lord, as David did in 1 Samuel 30:6. The verse says, “And David was greatly distressed; for the people spake of stoning him, because the soul of all the people was grieved, every man for his sons and for his daughters: but David encouraged himself in the Lord his God” (King James Version). David encouraged or strengthened himself in the Lord his God. But you, sometimes, need others to encourage you.
Unfortunately, it is easier for people to criticize others unfairly than to encourage them to do better. If someone is trying all he can do, and it may not be the best, encourage him rather than criticize him harshly, which may discourage him from trying more.
No human being is perfect. There is nothing a human does that is perfect. We can always improve on everything. Learn how to encourage others. Encourage your spouse, children, staff, and others. That may be the only reason for them to continue and even excel. When people believe in you and that you can make it, you don’t want to disappoint them.
Don’t be a discourager. Don’t be stingy with encouragement! What will it cost you to appreciate something good that somebody has done, even if it is not perfect? Don’t always focus on the negatives; appreciate the positives. Tell people what they’ve done well so that they can continue and even do better.
In Acts 4, an apostle, Joseph or Joses, nicknamed Barnabas, which means “Son of Encouragement”, a Levite from the island of Cyprus, was an encourager. Like many others sold their land or houses and brought the money to the apostles for those in need, he sold a field he owned and brought the money (verses 34-37). Paul, the notorious persecutor of the church, would never forget how Barnabas encouraged him, after his conversion. Barnabas brought him to the apostles and convinced them to accept him (Acts 9:26-27).
Barnabas later went to Tarsus to look for Paul and brought him to Antioch, which took Paul’s ministry to another level (Acts 11:25-26). Whom are you encouraging? Or who are you discouraging with your unfair criticisms and insensitive comments or your inconsiderate actions? You can encourage or discourage others with your words or actions.
Many people don’t know that pastors also need encouragement! Truly, your financial support encourages them in ministry, but encouragement is not limited to money. How many times have you told your pastor or any minister you were blessed by his ministry if you were? I’m not talking about flattery. Nevertheless, everyone should continue to do what God has called him to do, whether people encourage him or not.
The Bible tells us to encourage each other, and we should do this. Paul said, “I’m eager to encourage you in your faith, but I also want to be encouraged by yours. In this way, each of us will be a blessing to the other” (Romans 1:12 New Living Translation). He also said in 1 Thessalonians 5:11, “So encourage each other and build each other up, just as you are already doing” (New Living Translation).
The writer of Hebrews says, “But encourage each other everyday while it is today” (Hebrews 3:13 New Century Version). Become an encourager today. Encourage others with your words and actions. Hebrews 10:24-25 also says, “We should keep on encouraging each other to be thoughtful and to do helpful things. Some people have gotten out of the habit of meeting for worship, but we must not do that. We should keep on encouraging each other, especially since you know that the day of the Lord’s coming is getting closer” (Contemporary English Version). When we come together as a church, we should encourage each other, not discourage one another.
Learn to encourage others. It can make a difference between failure and success. It can also determine whether someone gives up or continues to live. Let’s encourage each other. Everyone needs encouragement.
If you are not born again, you need to give your life to Jesus now. I urge you to take the following steps: *Admit that you are a sinner and you cannot save yourself and repent of your sins. *Confess Jesus as your Lord and Saviour. *Renounce your past way of life – your relationship with the devil and his works. *Invite Jesus into your life. *As a mark of seriousness to mature in the faith, start attending a Bible-believing and Bible-teaching church. There they will teach you how to grow in the Kingdom of God.
Kindly say this prayer now: O Lord God, I come unto You today. I know I am a sinner and I cannot save myself. I believe that Jesus is the Son of God who died on the cross to save me and God raised Him on the third day. I repent of my sins and confess Jesus as my Lord and Saviour. I surrender my life to Jesus now and invite Him into my heart. By this prayer, I know I am saved. Thank You, Jesus, for saving me and making me a child of God.
I believe you have said this prayer from your heart. Congratulations! You will need to join a Bible-believing and Bible-teaching church in your area where they will teach you how to live your new life in Christ Jesus. I pray that you flourish like a palm tree and grow like a cedar of Lebanon. May you grow into Christ in all things and become all God wants you to be. I will be glad to hear from you. The Lord be with you.
PRAYER POINTS: Father, help me to be an encourager, not a discourager. I pray that everyone who needs encouragement at this time will receive it in Jesus’ name. Nobody will give up or take his life because of a lack of encouragement.
(For over 800 in-depth and powerful messages by T. O. Banso, visit www.cedarministry.org).
T. O. Banso is the President of Cedar Ministry International, Abuja, Nigeria.
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