“Hey, Pamela. Let’s get together and catch up!”
I highly underestimated the significance of Margaret’s invitation. I expected simple small talk, while enjoying my favorite “fuji apple chicken salad” at Panera. Fortunately, Margaret had much more in mind.
She leaned across the table, probing my soul with pointed questions. Margaret listens well, and then digs deep. It’s her caring way of re-entering my world.
“How are things really going… with you…family…ministry?”
Margaret looks beyond what she hears. This 5 foot seasoned missionary detected a thread of discouragement in my neatly packaged answers. So she drilled deeper. Finally we discovered its source. Dreams God designed for my life had gotten buried beneath daily, essential duties.
Margaret exhorted me, “Don’t hide your faith and talents! Use them for God’s glory!” Her heartfelt counsel, danced with encouragement and passion. Margaret has credibility. Twenty-two years of living life the way God designed for her, trusting Him for finances, transportation, health care and more, and never lacking!
I left the restaurant, optimistic and joy-filled. Margaret’s encouragement inspired me to tread a pathway to a richer, happier life. To intentionally pursue the dreams God stamped on my heart.
Encouraging words transcend race, age, and religion. Like God’s Words; they create. Spontaneous creations of encouragement can uplift the bowed down anytime, anyplace.
At the supermarket… a frazzled mom, arms cradling a baby, works hard to quiet her cranky toddler. At the restaurant, waiters and waitresses logging dozens of miles, greeting and serving with a smile, “what can I get for you today?” At home, kids drag through the front door, beat down by competition and comparisons.
Driving home the yellow light cautioned me to slow down and stop. Likewise, honing this rare language demands pauses. If not, out come polluted words.
“Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen” (Ephesians 4:29).
Encouraging words live on like endless echoes throughout life.
Encouragement, giving it and receiving it, makes life richer and happier.