I was talking on the telephone with one of my sister-in-laws yesterday. At one point she said, "I'm amazed that you haven't burned out yet. After doing this kind of work for so many years." I told her that I really have to stay on top of it. In fact, I am very serious about seeking out every drop of encouragement I can find. Here are a few drops I have found lately:
- Going to a funeral in a small town a few hours west of Waco. A fine Christian woman had died after her health declined. This funeral was a celebration of her life and her faith. How encouraging!
- A woman recently approached me after the morning assembly. She handed me a very large bill--a sizable sum of money. She wanted me to give it to a person who I had known years ago who had just lost her son. This woman in our church had never met the other woman. She just felt for her. How encouraging!
- Last Sunday a man in our community asked our church to pray for him. His wife had just left him before Christmas. Just before we prayed, I watched as men and women came to the front pew where he was sitting just to be with him as we prayed for him. How encouraging!
- Last Sunday evening in our life group, different people expressed a desire to get very serious about the Lord's will in areas in which they had become lax. How encouraging!
- This past Sunday morning, just before the assembly began, a woman began sharing a part of her story with me. She told me how she had come to know Christ and how her life really changed from what she had been. How encouraging!
These kind of stories energize me. They remind me that God is still at work. Yes, I see a lot of things that could be very discouraging. Yes, I know that the evil one uses discouragement to drag us down until we basically give up.
I choose to focus on what God is doing. Think for a moment. Can you look in the rear view mirror of your life and see where God has been at work? Those are hope-filled moments which breath fresh air into our otherwise stale lives.