Saturday, June 23, 2012

A Little Encouragement Goes A Long Way

I often wonder what heaven will hold for us. Will we one day enter the gates of heaven and get to hear or visualize the prayers that were said on our behalf? Prayers spoken on our behalf by those we have never met in person. Maybe they are prayers that were requested by a friend. A co-worker. Prayers come in all shapes and sizes, but one thing is for sure. Prayer is power. Prayer is surrendering that horrific detail of your life to the Lord and Savior and trusting Him to move and do His will and way. Prayer is humbling your heart and realizing you have no control over a situation, but the One above does. Christ knows the circumstances that surround each and every moment in our lives. No matter how big or small. He is involved. There are times when we think He is silent. Oh, those are the times when He is at work. Not only in our circumstance, but most importantly, in our heart.

Have you ever needed encouragement, but found yourself encouraging another instead? Funny thing about encouragement. The more we give, the more we receive. I love how God meets the needs of our life by simply placing others in our path with life lessons and great wisdom. Ever wonder how far a simple hello reaches? A smile? Those little hellos and smiles fill our hearts with joy. As we are filled we then are empowered to reach out to others. At some point when we totally surrender to Christ, a barrier is broken. A wall comes down and we are no longer looking out for number one, but now our life has taken on a new purpose. In serving our Savior, we bring encouragement to others and through that one simple act of kindness and grace, we receive an abundance of love. We must remember, never to expect from others what we ourselves are not willing to give.

Are you receiving encouragement from those around you? I can honestly tell you, I don't always receive encouragement. Especially from those who I most expect it from. But, isn't that the amazing thing about God? He brings us blessings from those we least expect. He directs our travels to new places and introduces us to new people.

Let me put it this way. It's okay to change your surroundings. Seek Christ first and foremost. He has filled us with everything we need for His work. We are empowered by the Holy Spirit. It can't get any better than that. All we must do is tap into that well of riches and stop putting limits on God. It's then we will see blessings flow from His fountain of love.

When we live in a box and shut out other people, we are putting limitations on God's purpose for our life. We are telling Him, "Okay, I will do Your work right here, with only these people." Well, I'm not so sure a blessing is going to come from cutting God out of the picture. Isn't that what we do? We see He has a plan for us, but then we take it and make it our own. God wants more for us. He too wants more from us. He wants to be number one in our life. He wants to have a personal relationship with Him.

When we stop looking for this world to meet our needs and seek Christ for those needs, He is going to open doors in places we never knew possible. But, isn't that our God? The One who does the possible with the impossible?

Be empowered today, not by seeking encouragement from those around you, but by seeking Christ. Seek Him in a new way. When we are filled with joy, that joy multiplies and reaches areas far greater than our simple vision.

We have everything we need for this moment in life. The question is, "What are we going to do?"

Everything in life is a choice. When we make the choice to focus on God, this world holds no limitations over us. Take charge of your today, by surrendering it to the Lord. In doing so, you will be filled with such encouragement that God's light will be present and flowing in each step you take toward living a purpose filled life for Christ.

"Always be joyful. Never stop praying. Be thankful in all circumstances, for this is God's will for you who belong to Christ Jesus."
1 Thessalonians 5:17-18

"But the Holy Spirit produces this kind of fruit in our lives: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control."
Galatians 5:22-23

"Love is patient and kind. Love is not jealous or boastful or proud or rude. It does not demand its own way. It is not irritable, and it keeps no record of being wronged. It does not rejoice about injustice but rejoices whenever the truth wins out. Love never gives up, never loses faith, is always hopeful, and endures through every circumstance."
1 Corinthians 13:4-7


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