If I were to ask you to name someone in your life who has been a great encouragement to you, who would you name? I would have to say that my grandmother Clark was a wonderful encouragement to me. She is with Jesus now but while she was living, she would pray fervently for everyone, including me! My grandmother would welcome anyone into her home with no questions asked. Although she was one of my biggest cheerleaders, the encourager extraordinaire is Jesus!
- Jesus had compassion for others as seen in Mark 1:41 where He healed the man with leprosy and in Mark 6:34 when He fed the 5,000 people who came to hear Him teach.
- Jesus accepted people where they were and was non- judgmental as found in John 8 with the woman who was guilty of adultery as well as in Luke 19 when He insisted on going to Zacchaeus, the tax collector’s house for dinner.
- Jesus put others first by giving them His personal attention especially seen in Mark 5:21-34 when the woman who had suffered from bleeding for 12 years touched His robe and He turned around to address her in the midst of the crowd.
- Jesus provided hope, encouragement and inspiration when He shared in Mark 10:26-27 that “with God all things are possible” or in Matthew 11:28-30 where He promised to give us rest and in John 14:27 when He said He will give us peace.
- Jesus met people’s needs wherever He went as seen in John 4 when He had a conversation with the Samaritan woman at Jacob’s well.
- Jesus’ words were always fitting for each situation as demonstrated in Mark 3:5 when He asked the man with the withered hand to stretch out his hand and when he did, it was made whole.
- Jesus was observant whether it was noticing Zacchaeus in the tree in Luke 19:1-10 or knowing that the power went out from Him as the woman touched His robe in Mark 5:21-34.
We can use Jesus’ example as a grid by which to develop a healthy ministry of encouragement.
Question to think about: What motivates us to be encouragers?