This post on biblical encouragement has been in the works for awhile.
However, every time the blog writing would begin, the subject would end up being delayed. It became frustrating because this is a topic on my heart ever since reading about it in Pastor Tullian's book, Unfashionable
Yes, for those of you wondering I have been reading this book for months. Pastor Tullian is like Watchman Nee for me...little bits to digest at a time.
While having a minute with the little one watching her newest Veggie Tales, I decided to begin this week's blog. Oh wait a minute, you are probably wondering: "What little one?"
She is my niece's three year old granddaughter. We have her for the week, while my Aunt is having surgery. Ok...now that confusion is cleared up back to the post at hand.
My idea for the biblical encouragement post went along the lines of "this is the definition of biblical encouragement and these are the characteristics of God seen in each of these women I know..."
My loving Daddy, oh how He loves me said, "No." Not once either but each time I blogged.
He instead showed me two things:
The first one is a BIG OUCH for me:
Abba Daddy said,
"Darling daughter you can't write what you don't understand."
See, He was showing me, I don't understand biblical encouragement. How can one write about something they don't understand?
Secondly, there was more to learn. This lesson would be learned at Second Touch Fellowship, when Pastor Ron Melton asked the following question:
"Who is the most important person in the room...
And you can't answer God, Jesus or the Holy Spirit."
Upon him asking the question, I leaned over to Sweetie and whispered, "Not me." Others in the room, were answering, "Me, yourself, etc..."
Pastor Ron's answer?
"Not you. It is the other people God puts in your life."
While driving back to the apartment, my mind kept hearing Pastor Ron's question. He said during the sermon, he was trying to think of an acronym to help people remember the question.
However, W.I.T.M.I.P.I.T.R just didn't have the ring of WWJD. Laughter filled the room.
Being the way God created me, I kept wondering what acronym there could be to help us remember the question. The following is what God gave me:
Now, what in the world does this all have to do with biblical encouragement?
Pastor Tullian explains biblical encouragement, "the verbal affirmation of someone's strength, giftedness, or accomplishment, along with the realization that God the Creator is the ultimate source behind whatever is being affirmed. The secret to true biblical encouragement is learning to see God's reflection in others."
Your and my challenge: Share biblical encouragement with people in our lives. Not flattery. Tullian defines flattery, "If I tell this person something nice, he'll do for me what I want him to."
Boy, did that one hurt. How many times have I given flattery instead of encouragement.
Did I mention a fellow blogger with the right motives? Or did I hope they would be so flattered
they will mention me in their posts....see it is right there "they will be flattered and what will it benefit me, instead of giving biblical encouragement."
My goal is to have God help me build up and give biblical encouragement without expecting anything in return. He has quite a job in front of Him. So glad, I serve a BIG GOD!!!
"For by the grace given me I say to every one of you:
Do not think of yourself more highly than you ought,"---Romans 12:3a