Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Encourage yourself!

My Dad was my rock my second year in Master's Commission. It was a rough year of ministry, and I often found myself overwhelmed with discouragement. Every Tuesday I'd call Dad on my lunch break, pouring out my heart and often quite a few tears. He usually just would listen then pray with me, but one particular Tuesday he gave me an unforgettable piece of wisdom. Years later, I still consider it to be some of the best advice I've ever been given.

He said: "Megan, you are not always going to have your Daddy or someone near you to encourage you. You have to learn to encourage yourself in the Lord."

God has blessed me with friends and family who believe in me and lift me up, but there truly are times when only God can bring comfort and strength.

There are times when no one will have the words to lift your spirit besides His Holy Spirit. His words will speak life.
There are dark hours, lonely seasons when we must look to Him alone for strength. He must become our joy, the One who causes us to smile.

I do not mean to diminish the role of the Church in any way! Fellowship is essential for believers, as we are relational beings through and through. But we must not go to others with our burdens before we've received the comfort and strength of God's Holy Spirit. We are not to place on someone the weight of our heavy burden. That being said, we ARE called to "share each other's burdens"(Gal. 6:2).

Share, not transfer.

And if we have first sought Christ to encourage, strengthen, and lift us, we are able to share our burden with a brother or sister without overwhelming them, and vice versa. God does the heavy lifting!

We must learn to encourage ourselves in the Lord. He is all-sufficient. He is. Don't doubt His ability to work on Your behalf.


"Can we find a friend so faithful
Who will all our sorrows share?
Jesus knows our every weakness,
Take it to the Lord in prayer."

-What a Friend We Have in Jesus

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