While singing through the hallways at United Living Community, I led the well-known song, “Jesus Loves Me.”
At the chorus I pointed to different residents, changing it to “Yes, Jesus loves you.” One resident looked at me, her eyes widening, her lips trembling, and tears poured down her cheeks. I bent down and said, “Remember, Jesus loves you so much!” She replied, “I sometimes forget. Thank you for reminding me.”
What a meaningful impact caused by my simple gesture and words. I asked myself, “how often do I overlook an opportunity to speak into someone’s life because I think my words are too brief or too unimportant? How often do I assume someone already knows something so I don’t say it?” I am reminded, again, that it takes very little to show someone I value them and that God loves them.
Are we not told in Scripture to speak into others’ lives? To encourage them? Here are a few Scriptures I am reminding myself of daily:
“Therefore encourage one another and build each other up, just as in fact you are doing” (I Thessalonians 5:11). Written as an encouragement to the church in Thessalonica, this challenged them to be active and purposeful and alert to the needs of those around them.
The reason is to bring the lost into salvation. Let us also encourage and edify one another to be strong in faith, to show the Love of Christ, and reassure them of Christ’s Love.
“May the God who gives endurance and encouragement give you the same attitude of mind toward each other that Christ Jesus had” (Romans 15:5). Paul views God as the ultimate source of encouragement and endurance. God is not merely the one to whom we will give an account, (14:12), he is the one who lifts us up, helping us to keep going. As the Holy Spirit lives in us, we then have this same Spirit of encouragement to share with others.
In Romans 15:2 we are reminded as believers to help others do what is right and build them up in the Lord. Paul wrote in the previous verse that those who are strong in their faith and are confident of the grace of God, are not to insist on pleasing themselves at the expense of others. Instead, Paul proposes that believers do what they can to improve their neighbor’s life to show unselfish honor towards their neighbor. As believers we are to make it a priority to share and show Christ’s love to a hurting, lost world through our actions and words.
The final verse I am re-memorizing these days is from Proverbs 15:11, “A word fitly spoken is like apples of gold in settings of silver.” When we speak with intention, conviction, value, and honor to another, we are offering them a treasure equal to the most beautiful gold and silver décor they can find. Our words can bring healing, encouragement, and strength for their journey.