Tag Archives: encourage

Impact Each Other

Father, once again I sit at Your feet. As I open up Your Word may I see what You want me to see. May the impression it makes on me speak to me throughout this day and the days to come.

1 Timothy 5:17-23 (<<click here)

As a pastor, Lord, it is obvious that I have great responsibility: to uphold and proclaim Your Word and to live an exemplary life before both my congregations and the world. But as Paul states in today’s passage the congregation has responsibilities, as well: to support their pastor financially and to lift him up and encourage them. They are also to hold them accountable.

Lord, I am so very blessed to serve the churches to which I have been appointed. Growing up in a pastor’s home I have many warm thoughts of people and events but I am well aware that there were many struggles. There were many contributing factors but it is a fact that we didn’t live in any community for more than 3½ years. Situations would develop and packing would commence. I am grateful that my father, too, has been richly blessed to serve a congregation in his “retirement” where he is loved and supported in so many ways. He has touched many lives and they have touched him as well.

My prayer is that I continue to meet the needs of the churches I serve – that I will faithfully teach them and feed them and challenge them. I know they love me, and support me and respect me. Yes, there are things I could improve upon and with the Lord’s help I will. May they continue to go deeper in their relationships with God so that together we will impact the world for the Kingdom!

Sept 22nd, Tues, 6:40 am

Tough Love

Father, I need Your help this morning. Things in life are crowding into my mind. Help me to give them over to You. My rehashing over them is accomplishing nothing. This is our time. Lead me down the paths You would have me go.

1 Thessalonians 5:14 (<<click here)

Lord, this verse truly shows Paul to be a proponent of tough love. In my mind’s eye I see him as a tough nut, not one to put up with much foolishness but also one who literally give you the robe of his back. He was a man of great love but also one who would not back down on the truth. Of course, he was just as human as I am but he truly strove to be like You in all he did.

Lord, help me, too, to be like You in all I do! This verse pulls out one small snippet of life but shows clearly how we must respond to life. Life is all about discerning situations, responding in love and patience, for myself and others to do the very best we can, even if there is some pushing involved.

Way too often we go the easiest route. We don’t warn the lazy – it’s easier to complain behind their back. It’s just too much work to change them. But if that is our response, nothing improves. Things don’t get done. We are frustrated. We think poorly of others and tear them down. Warnings with patience! Love is best.

Sometimes we respond the same way to those who are timid, though their lack of activity may be due to shyness or fear of doing something wrong. Again encouraging them with love and patience will move everyone farther down the desired path.

The path of least resistance may be easy, but unfortunately it doesn’t really get us anywhere. Tasks don’t get done with efficiency but more importantly we miss opportunities to love and lift each other up.

Lord, help me to invest in people with love and patience.

July 30th, Thurs, 7:46 am

Light Piercing the Darkness

Father, this day is Yours. Use me however You wish to accomplish Your will, at church, at home, with family. Help me to listen, enable me to obey.

1 Thessalonians 5:1-11 (<<click here)

Lord, I truly believe that Your return is imminent. Help me, as Paul says, to encourage and build others up. Everyone needs this.

My brothers and sisters in You – that is fellow believers need to be encouraged and built up to not give up in their faithful service to You. Our world keeps getting darker and darker but they and I cannot allow our lights to grow dim. From a reality viewpoint darkness cannot snuff out the light! Light pierces the darkness and will not be defeated. Darkness is merely the absence of light. So, Lord, help us to encourage one another to let our light shine all the brighter!

Those outside the faith need encouraged and built up, too! Help me to touch them with the light You have so graciously given me. It is treacherous walking about in the darkness. We’re to show them the truth of who You are then shine Your light upon their path. Enable me to be patient and loving in all my interactions today. Permeate my person with Your presence!

Yes, Lord, You are coming soon, that is Your promise and it will happen. And as 2 Peter 3:9 states, You are not slow about Your promise, as some people think. No, You are being patient for our sake. You don’t want anyone to be destroyed, but You want everyone to repent.

Lord, praise Your name for your patience and love!

July 26th, Sun, 7:03 am

Focus

Good morning, Father! Thank you for such a wonderful day yesterday! You enabled me and Karen to get so much done working in the yard. The day together was truly a blessing. Thank You, especially for her, I could ask for no better companion for this life’s journey. Bless her this day, Father!

1 Thessalonians 2:7-12 (<<click here)

Lord, a serious question I must ask of myself this morning is: What do people think of You from watching me? Am I a good or a poor reflection of You? Do You shake Your head at my antics?

In this morning’s passage, Paul points out several things that will help me to better focus my reflection of You in my life. First, I am called to act as a child. Now my study Bible* points out that this doesn’t mean I am to be “immature or untrained. Rather…like children” I am to be “honest, straightforward, and without guile” in presenting the Good News through my life. Lord, help me to live a life of transparency  –  that people never have to guess what I am up to but know that what they see is who I am. And may You continue to buff and sand off all the rough edges in me so I will become more and more like You.

Secondly, Lord, help me to be diligent – giving my best effort throughout my daily walk with You. Be it at work or home or church, may I always be “devout and honest and faultless toward” others. I am like everyone else – I get weary, I get apathetic. But Lord, again, help me to keep my focus in the right place – on You! You deserve my all, not half or three-quarters. You deserve my best! If I strive to please You in all I do, others will be taken care of, too!

Lastly, then, if I live as I should, I will be able to encourage others to do the same. We will all then be able to live our lives in ways worthy of You! Amen – so be it!

July 12th,  2015, Sun, 6:20 am

*New Living Translation Application Study Bible

Choices

Father, please use this time together to draw me closer to You and to strengthen my determination to be faithful and true to You. These last few days have been a battle; sin has been battering me from all sides.  I pray that I would do as Paul commands in 1 Corinthians 16:13 “Be on guard. Stand firm in the faith. Be courageous. Be strong.” I am victorious in You, Almighty God, only in You.

I Thessalonians 1:8-10 (<<click here)

Jesus, I pray that Your word would ring out from me to people everywhere just as it did with the believers of Thessalonica! May every aspect of my life be a proclamation of the victory that is found only in an intimate relationship with You. Every day in every situation I have choices to make – to be loving or hateful, forgiving, to pass along gossip, to feed the monster of discontent, to go with the flow and complain about people or situations beyond my control, to stop, listen and encourage when it would be easier to ignore the whole thing – and the list could go on and on. But Lord, You have called me to be salt and light in my world (Mathew 5:13-16) Grant me the desire to do so willingly and eagerly! And as Paul proclaims at the end of this passage, what I do is all the more important for Your return is immanent! Help me to strive to make You the focal point of my life so others will be encouraged to stay true to You and walk with You faithfully. And if they do not know You that my actions would be a beacon shining on You showing them the way.

July 7th, Tues, 7:01 am