November 23, 2015

30 Days of Encouragement {Day 23}: Get in Touch

This is the final week of a month-long series.  Start here to find out what it is all about.

I think we're in the fun part of this series.  How about you?  The part where ideas are shared and you can try out the "encourage one another" thing in a variety of ways.  On Saturday I shared about the importance of getting together and spending time with people to encourage them.  Today's topic is similar, but focused more on communicating with the "another" you are trying to encourage, rather than being physically present with them.  You can encourage one another by getting in touch!

In our super slick modern age, there are so many ways we can be in touch.  Messages are constantly flying over the airwaves and through miles of wire, but I wonder what percentage of them are intentionally sent to encourage?  A message sent in love, with words carefully chosen to build up the other person and point them to Christ, will stand out and light a fire in a soul.  Or a phone call made with the purpose of listening, while asking a few direct questions, can change the course of someone's day, or life, to God's glory.

Our means of communication these days include phone calls, text messages, emails, and (my favorite) handwritten letters.  Any of these means of communication can convey to the receiver, Hey, I was thinking of YOU, yes you.  I want to know how YOU are doing.  I want to know how I can  pray for you and hear about what's going on in your life. YOU matter in this crazy world and God loves you and will help you, guide you, teach you, and sustain you.  And I love YOU, you're important to me, too.

It does not have to complicated to communicate that much.  For example, on a beautiful evening recently one of my local friends  sent me a text that simply said, SUNSET.  Can't get much briefer than one word, can you?  But what was communicated in that was, I know you and our mutual affection for gorgeous sunsets and God's beautiful creation.  I thought of YOU while I was admiring the sunset and wanted to make sure you did not miss it.  Yep, I got all that from one word!  What was super fun, to me, was that I had pointed out the beauty of the sunset to the kids not moments before that text beeped its way into my phone.  We were about an hour from home, admiring the same beauty as my friend!

Personally, I believe that snail mail and phone calls are particularly meaningful in this day and age of quick messages and rapid making of plans.  You can go a little deeper and/or hear tones in a way you might miss from a hastily typed message.  They also demand a setting aside of time that is different and intentional.  But as you can see from my story, a simple text can also communicate love and care, too!

Today choose one of these means of getting in touch and do so.  Ask the Lord to bring someone to mind that He can use you to encourage today.  Then plan to do so in the next day or so.  How much power the Lord has given us to spur one another on toward love and good deeds ... encouraging one another -- and all the more as we see the Day approaching.  (Hebrews 10: 24 -25)  His love for us, remember, is our reason to lift one another up.  His Spirit in us is our strength and guide for living out His love in the world.

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