Encourage People To Remain In the Faith

we ll get through it lettering text on black background

The apostle Paul was an encourager. He had put Christians through the wringer by persecuting them, even to the point of death. It’s no secret that Paul considered Christians to be blasphemers and he singlehandedly wrecked the lives of many innocent people. As Paul was on his way to Damascus to persecute more Christians, a man named Ananias saw a vision and the Lord told him that he would meet a man named Saul. Terrified, Ananias said that he heard all that Saul had done to the Christians. The Lord replied, “For I will show him how much he must suffer for the sake of my name” (Acts 9:16 ESV).

A long time after Paul was converted he began his mission journeys. He was stoned and left for dead at Timothy’s home village of Lystra. But Paul got up and went on to Derbe the next day. What happened next is incredible: “When they had preached the gospel to that city and had made many disciples, they returned to Lystra and to Iconium and to Antioch, strengthening the souls of the disciples, encouraging them to continue in the faith, and saying that through many tribulations we must enter the kingdom of God” (Acts 14:21, 22).

Many people are struggling in life. Like the apostle Paul, many will suffer for the name of Jesus. But we should encourage them to remain in the faith even when our lives are a mess. Paul never gave up. He consistently taught people who God is. He suffered severely yet never gave up treating people with kindness and teaching them who God is. He was always thankful for what God provided and never lost his focus.

Count Others More Significant than Yourselves

people silhouette during sunset

Our family has a hard and fast rule when we visit anywhere, whether it’s a restaurant, hotel, or are a guest somewhere. Our rule is to always leave a place better than you found it. This is a rule that we never break. As parents, it’s great to watch our kids pick up trash, tidy things up, and wipe things down. We taught them not to refuse to clean up other people’s messes. Even if the mess is not ours, we still clean up and leave the place better than we found it.

But a more important principle that we need to teach is to always leave a person better than what we found them. There may be some things in their life that is out of sorts. They may be struggling with something or are just having a terrible day. We may not be able to fix their problems, but are we leaving them in better shape than when we found them?

Romans 12:10 (ESV) says, “Love one another with brotherly affection. Outdo one another in showing honor.” Philippians 2:3 says, “Do nothing from selfish ambition or conceit, but in humility count others more significant than yourselves.” In other words, leave people in better shape than you found them. Doing this takes a tremendous amount of self-control. We have to be intentional about it. We have to stay positive. When we build others up, we are built up too.

When a Morale Boost Is In Order

we ll get through it lettering text on black background

King David is quite possibly the most infamous king to ever live on the planet. Jesus, the Savior of mankind, came from David’s lineage. We all know the king wasn’t without his problems. Infidelity, poor decisions, fleeing from his enemies and abandoning his people–are just a few of the major problems David caused. Possibly the worst, and one that had lasting effects, was when David mourned for his wicked son Absalom.

David had been forced out of Jerusalem and only had a few loyal people willing to fight for him. Even still, when Absalom died David threw himself down and mourned, even saying that he wished he would have died so Absalom would have lived. This brought the morale of his troops to an all time low. Joab intervened and rebuked David: “For you have made it clear today that commanders and servants are nothing to you. . . now therefore arise, go out and speak kindly to your servants, for I swear by the Lord, if you do not go, not a man will stay with you this night, and this will be worse for you than all the evil that has come upon you from your youth until now” (2 Samuel 19:6, 7 ESV).

David did muster up the strength to talk to his troops and encourage them. Eventually they fell back in line and supported David, but David’s poor leadership led to many great losses, including the loss of morale. Right now morale in our nation is at a very low low. There is a lot of heartache going on in the lives of many and, like David, we need to encourage each other whether we feel like it or not. People need to know they’re not alone. They need to know that we stand beside them. There are many ways we can encourage people who are suffering and we need to go the extra mile to do so. The Lord will bless those efforts. He always has.

Why Missions Are Important


Our team of ten, Lord willing, will be leaving Thursday to travel to Ecuador. There is a lot of planning that goes into these trips. It’s so important to visit the missionaries our church supports. It’s a tremendous source of encouragement for the mission workers who live abroad and it allows us to connect with Christians from around the world.

It is well known that churches who are involved in missions grow. Without mission support, we would greatly hinder the kingdom. Jesus told his disciples to go into all the world. Not everyone will become a missionary. And that’s OK. But people who do not (or cannot) go on long trips can still support missions in a big way.

When Paul was on his first missionary journey, he could have gone straight home. In fact, it would have been much quicker and more of a direct route to do so. Instead, Luke records that Paul “returned to Lystra and to Iconium and to Antioch, strengthening the souls of the disciples, encouraging them to continue in the faith, and saying that through many tribulations we must enter the kingdom of God” (Acts 14:21-22 ESV).

We need to remember that it’s vital to encourage other Christians–both from afar and in person. They are working hard for the Lord. They labor day and night. It is not easy work, and they face so many discouragements along the way. We are excited to visit our friends in Ecuador and to meet other brothers and sisters who live in that beautiful country! Please pray for the Campbells and the work that is being done there.

Photo by Aneta Ivanova on Unsplash