I used to look at high-flyers or really confident people and think that they wouldn’t have a care in the world. They are probably financially well off, married, got kids, a great vocation, travel a lot…they have it all. So it would seem.
But when we look beneath the surface, just a little, we find they are no different to you and me. They have fears, concerns, tribulations and get discouraged too. They may not always show it…but they do.
Take Paul in Acts 28. We find he is at the top of his game; he survives a shipwreck; he survives viper snake bite; he heals the chief officials father; he heals the rest of those sick on the island; he gets back on another boat, sails several more days and then travels by land to Rome.
You would think Paul would be ecstatic. What a journey. What amazing ministry. Miracles abound.
But when we look a little beneath the surface and test that, we see that even Paul needed encouragement.
The believers there (Rome) had heard that we were coming, and they traveled as far as the Forum of Appius and the Three Taverns to meet us. At the sight of these people Paul thanked God and was encouraged. Act 28:15
The believers travel quite a long way for those days – 70 km – that’s like 2 – 3 days walk. It’s like us getting in a car in Australia and driving from Melbourne to Brisbane. It’s a long way.
At the sight of these people, Paul is so pleased they have come – he thanks God.
And he was encouraged.
And this is my finding too. When I have seen people who seemingly have it all, you can easily get past the facade by simply encouraging them. Encouragement is like water to a thirsty plant. Encouragement revives a thirsty soul. Everyone needs encouragement… even those who don’t seem to have a care in the world…while they hide their need better than most, they too crave for encouragement. Just encourage them and see for yourself.
Never underestimate the power of going out of your way to deliver an encouraging word.
What do you think? Did you get someone specifically to encourage?