The Power of Encouragement

Encouragement Everyday Truth occupies a very small corner of the Internet. While I’m constantly amazed by the number of people who choose to stop by here every day, the reality is that in the big pond of the Internet, this blog is a minnow. And sometimes that’s discouraging.

When you pour your heart and soul into something and not many people see what you’re doing, it can be easy to want to walk away. It can be really easy to decide it’s just not worth it. When it’s a struggle to get out of bed in the morning and follow the path God has asked you to walk, it’s tempting to ignore His prompting and go back to sleep. We ask ourselves, “Am I really making a difference?”

I find when those thoughts start crowding out God’s voice, God usually steps in. He often offers up someone who inserts just the right amount of encouragement to keep you going. He sends someone into your life to remind you to listen to His voice, not your doubts.

That happened to me this week when I was feeling a bit discouraged about the impact of this little blog. A friend of mine sent me a message about a conversation she had with another mom she knew about how that mom was so encouraged by what she reads here in this space. Then, this morning, I found a note in my inbox from a woman who is planting a church on Reunion Island (Yeah, I had to look it up, too. It’s off the coast of Madagascar.) She wanted to translate one of my posts into French to use on her blog.

Those two pieces of encouragement completely changed my outlook on this little space and whether it’s worth it to continue. And as I realized how much two simple emails changed my attitude, I started thinking about how sometimes we need the same type of encouragement as a parent.

So much of parenting is done in the background where no one sees what you’re doing. Too often, our kids don’t appreciate what we’re doing. Often, our friends parent differently than we do, and we feel judged or left out. Being a parent can be a lonely, discouraging road to walk.

But when we’re ready to throw in the towel, when we wonder if we’re making a difference, a word of encouragement can make all the difference. Having someone notice a character change in your child that you’ve been working hard to achieve or a simple, well-placed word from the person standing in front of you in line at the grocery store can make all the difference in your day.

But for those words of encouragement to happen for us, we have to encourage others. We have to put ourselves out to build someone else up. We have to not judge and instead help each other.

Because we never know when God will use us to change the course of someone else’s day. We never know when He will use us to be His voice. We never know just how important those words of encouragement may be.

Never hesitate to encourage another parent. Never hesitate to send a note of thanks to someone who has made a difference in your or your child’s life. Never hesitate to lift up another person whether you know them or not.

Because there’s going to be a day that you need that encouragement, and God will send someone to you to be His hands and feet, too.