Encourage One Another

And let us consider how to stimulate one another to love and good deeds, not forsaking our own assembling together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another; and all the more as you see the day drawing near. ~Hebrews 10:23-25

One of the things that I struggle with the most is getting out of my own little world, getting involved with the community of believers, and being an active member of the body of Christ. I sometimes envy those that have the natural inclination to serve and to encourage others. For me this is a struggle. When I get home from work and on the weekends my first desire is to pull back within myself and rest. I want to just lock the doors, close the curtains, shut out the world, and just be. While rest is important - Jesus Himself often sought a quiet place to rest - a continuous lifestyle of rest and comfort is not what scripture calls us to live.

All believers have been given gifts that God intends for us to use for His purposes in concert with other members of the church (Ephesians 4:11). We are called not only to utilize our own gifts, but also to stimulate and encourage those around us to fully utilize theirs as well. Many of us focus on the encouragement of our brothers and sisters but overlook what we are supposed be to encouraging them to: love and good deeds. We are to help spur and motivate each other to action. We are also given a context here: "all the more as you see the day drawing near."

We must remember that our time on this earth is short and that God has a plan and a purpose for all of us. This world, our own selfish nature, and Satan himself work together to distract us from God's plan and purpose. Each of us must resist the temptation to become self involved and instead be constantly vigilant and focus on what God would have us do each day. This is not as easy as it sounds, and we all require the people God has placed around us to occasionally step in; to motivate and remind us in love where we are to focus our attention. We also need to remember that as hard as it can be for us, it is just as hard for others. 

We have all learned how to put on a good face and we have been taught not to burden others with our trials. Most of us are pretty good at wearing our masks. However, even the person who appears to "have it all together" is struggling just like you are even if they don't show it. They could use your encouragement. As we "see the day drawing near" we need to remember to lift one another up, to not forsake our brothers and sisters to face their battles alone, and to accept help from others when it is offered. 

Within our community of believers we need to be active and attending to God's purposes. Where today can you help motivate or encourage someone to act on what God has equipped them to do?

And do not neglect doing good and sharing, for with such sacrifices God is pleased. ~Hebrews 13:16

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