Recently a friend of mine at Uni expressed her interest in joining Ladies Rugby. She’s second year and isn’t part of any other clubs or societies. I encouraged and built her up to go for it. When we were sat in the SU she asked a couple of the Ladies Rugby girls if and how she could join. She’s now training with them and playing in their weekly games, and has another group of friends. Her uni experience has been significantly improved because of this. It’s so easy to do, it didn’t take much effort from me at all, but the impact is truly massive. Who can you encourage and build up?
Encouraging is such a powerful thing to do, but often we’re too ‘British’ about how we encourage others. We’re worried that if we say ‘I think that you look lovely’ or ‘you have a real gift in welcoming’ we will look overly keen and just a bit weird. Does our self-consciousness and pride get in the way of encouraging others in their gifts?
1 Thessalonians 5: 11 (The Message) says “So speak encouraging words to one another. Build up hope so you’ll all be together in this, no one left out, no one left behind. I know you’re already doing this; just keep on doing it”. People love hearing that they have a gift in something. Let’s build each other up and bring out these gifts so that they can be used to their full potential. The more you put in, the more you’ll get out. If we really start investing time into this encouragement, we ourselves will see the change and the effect that that is having in our mates.
Are we setting a good example for our youth and young people through encouraging them and building up their gifts? Modelling this is essential in them developing these skills too, to go on and be encouraging people. This creates community, so that, like it says in 1 Thess, no one is left out and no one is left behind.
Therefore this week I challenge you to choose two or three people that you think have a real gift in a particular area, and tell them. Have a conversation with them about how you think they are great. Be an encouragement this week, I dare you.
Let’s not leave anyone behind… “Build up hope so you’ll all be together in this, no one left out, no one left behind. I know you’re already doing this; just keep on doing it” (1 Thessalonians 5: 11).