Three times in the first chapter of Joshua God tells his new leader to be strong and courageous. Courage is a vital part of being used of God to make a difference for Him. Like Joshua, we need words of “encouragement”, (which means to put courage into), to overcome discouragement (which means to pull courage out of).
I recall a recent Saturday in which I heard from my best childhood friend. We had both gotten busy with life and had lost touch for over 20 years. During that phone call, we talked about family and friends as well as childhood memories. Those words with him and from him brought great courage to my life.
Moments later I felt the need for that encouragement as I was alerted a close family couple had a daughter who was getting married, but, because of space concerns, I was not invited to the wedding. The feeling of rejection was huge, and I felt discouraged since I had tried to be kind and supportive of the family when they struggled with various issues.
The Christians to whom Peter (and Silas) wrote experienced the painful rejection and discouragement of persecution. Throughout the book of 1 Peter words of encouragement are given so that they will stand firm in the grace of God.
Have you felt discouraged, needing the uplifting words of a friend? God’s Word can help you to stand.
Prayer point: Please pray for God to lead our church to develop a Comprehensive Community Ministries Plan in a revitalized Transform Center as a part of the “First West 100” effort.
Today’s Reading: 1 Peter 5:12