Friday, November 16, 2007

The Power of Encouragement

Have you experienced the power of encouragement?

The bond of our band of fellow hikers that made it to the bottom of the Grand Canyon and up made all the difference. We experienced and accomplished something very difficult together and we are bound forever by that knowledge. I would not have wanted to take that trip alone, I could not have taken that trip alone. The accountability factor of not wanting to let the others down, the mutuality of depending on each other, the words of encouragement "put one foot in front of the other-you can do this-we’re rooting for you" is what made the difference for me and what we all must do for each other in life.

And sometimes when the load gets too heavy, we need to do more such as carry each others burdens, their backpack. My husband, Dale, was gracious enough to add my light 10 lbs onto his heavy 60 lbs when I thought I couldn't go another step and we still had miles to go.

Encouragement spoken at the right time can lift our spirits when we struggle—it’s exactly the wind beneath our wings. The landscape is littered with hikers who have fallen off the trail. The small groups that we just experienced in the 40 Days study, this church community, our fellowship--is vital to keeping us strong and sure-footed in life.

So here’s a question for you--who do you have in your life that is rooting for you to make it to the top of the mountain, the end of your journey, to finish your life well? Who are you encouraging to do these things?

I believe in the power of encouragement because I've experienced it.

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