Encourage means to make someone more determined, hopeful, or confident. To make something more appealing or more likely to happen; to inspire with courage, spirit, or hope.
I write these words, all of my blog really, for two reasons: to write out my thoughts and research as I find application and to share them with others.
It's not rocket science. I don't have a degree. My only tools are the salvation Jesus won for me so that I can proclaim His name to any who happen to find their way to this blog, and a few research books and tools I've picked up along the way.
I don't have nearly enough answers for the questions I and many have asked through the centuries, since the beginning of time really, when Eve was first tempted by the question, "did God really say...?"
There are many answers God has given me for a portion of the questions I've asked, but there are still many answers he won't share with me. Grrrr.
But that's ok. He's God. I'm not.
He makes trees and babies and cells and oxygen and sulfur and gemstones and blood. I can't do any of that. I'm hardly able to make a good meal and a good piece of pie to follow it done the pipe.
If you've found your way on this blog through the blogging challenge or just happened by as you were scrolling the internet, I hope and pray always, always, always, that God uses a word or two to capture you, to intrigue you, to woo you into His loving arms of mercy.
There's so much to know that we will never know, but it is sure fun to explore, and I know a God - He's my God, He's my Savior, He's my Friend, He's my Brother - and He's not afraid of my questions. He's not afraid to not answer. He's not afraid of my doubt or disbelief or my misunderstanding of a word or a verse or a doctrine.
He gives me the grace and the mercy to keep seeking, to keep searching, to keep believing and reaching up in my pit of doubt and disbelief.
So instead of taking apart the word encourage and writing about the cool definitions and the way its used, let me encourage you - to make you more determined, hopeful, or confident - to seek Him out for your life. Take courage to take a peek. Just a peek. You're not pledging your right arm or your first child. Just take a gander over to His way and see for yourself what He's all about.
Really, what do you have to lose? Are things that great without the maker of the trees and cells that there is no room for improvement in your life?
See, the thing is, the question always remains for those who reject him, what if Christianity is true? What if Jesus is who He said He is? What if there is a heaven and a hell? What if there is mercy and grace and forgiveness for the evil in each one's heart?
What if you never asked Him to show you who He is? You can go on living life like you are right now. No one will know. Only you.
What if though, you did ask Him to show Himself to you? Do you wonder what that would feel like? Look like? Does it scare you to think about? That's ok, that's reasonable, human even.
But....What if He's really REAL? Wouldn't you want to give yourself the chance to find that out for certain before you decide completely you want nothing to do with Him?
And I'm NOT talking about wanting nothing to do with His followers, I'm talking about HIM! Don't let us knuckleheaded-mask-wearing-religious stop you from seeking Him. We won't be your excuse on the day of His return. You may use our hypocrisy as your excuse for staying away now, but it won't fly on the day you stand face to face with the Judge of all hearts.
Are you sure? Are you really sure you want to take the chance and keep on rejecting Him? You can't reject someone you know nothing about or base your rejection on hearsay. You're smarter than that, I know you are.
I encourage you, I want to give you a smidgen of the confidence and hope I have that He is real, He is true. His word is true. He can be trusted. It's not an easy life, this following Jesus life, but it's a good life. A real life. A life with purpose and meaning.
I hope that God gives you some answers to the questions you have, peace to wait for the answers that may not come, and I hope most of all you find peace in your storms.
There is a treasure waiting for you.
What if you passed it by?
And to the Believer, my encouragement to you is this: Keep on. Don't give up. Grab courage and run with it. Shake off the fears that bind you from living fully today. Face the giants head on. God's got you when you do, as much as He has when you don't. Wherever you are needing encouragement, here it is. God is bigger and stronger and more courageous than we can ever be without Him. Use what He's given you, don't waste it on fear. It's a horrible master.
Courage frees, fear binds.
Courage soars, fear imprisons us.
Courage brings joy, fear brings cynicism.
Courage believes, fear doubts.
Courage loves, fear despises.
E is for Encourage.
Thoughts to chew on:
1. What's your biggest fear of what will happen if you ask God to show Himself to you for the first time?
2. And then what will happen after that? Is your life really more free without Him?
3. Will you ask?