But encourage one another day after day, as long as it is still called "Today," lest any of you be hardened by the deceitfulness of sin.
His name was Joseph. He was a great guy, full of love and life. Everyone enjoyed being around him. There was just something about Joseph that made you feel good inside and filled your heart with hope that God was able, no matter how bleak your situation might be. His mentors noticed how encouraging Joseph was, and they changed his named to Barnabas, "which translated means, Son of Encouragement" (Acts 4:36).
Wouldn't it be awesome to have a name change like that... and be one who lived up to the name ENCOURAGER? Can I let you in on a little secret... you can be a Barnabas too. How?
1. View life from God's perspective. Nothing is ever too difficult for the Lord (Gen. 18:14). The greater the problem is, the greater the miracle. When Lazarus was gravely ill, Jesus sent this encouraging word to the family, "This sickness is not unto death, but for the glory of God." By the time His word arrived, Lazarus died. Jesus performed one of his greatest miracles in raising Lazarus from the tomb. The lesson here: God can do anything in your life and mine, even raise the dead!
2. View people as they can be. No doubt Barnabas did not see people as they were, but as they could be if they trusted God and walked by faith. You see, Barnabas was the one who saw what John Mark could be. While Paul wrote John Mark off for deserting the team on their first missionary journey (Acts 15:36-40), Barnabas did not. He saw the potential in John Mark, took him under his wing and helped him become a mighty force for God. The lesson here: See people through the eyes of faith. Believe in them and build them up so that they can start seeing what they can be.
3. Take the time to encourage. Encouragement does not cost you anything but a little time. It is amazing how a card, a note, an email, or a kind word of encouragement can make someone's day. Why not make it a daily priority to compliment, praise and encourage the people around you... especially your own family members. They need it the most.
Pastor Jeff Schreve,
From His Heart Ministries
Dr. Jeff Schreve believes that no matter how badly you may have messed up in life, God still loves you and has a wonderful plan just for you. From His Heart provides real truth, love and hope on over 700 radio stations each day, in 182 countries each week on TV, and is always available online. Pastor Jeff takes no income from this ministry. All donations go to furthering the broadcast outreach. As a listener/viewer supported ministry, we thank you for joining with us to help speak the truth in love to a lost and hurting world. Go to www.fromhisheart.org for more information.
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