Wii Family Game Night comes around every so often in our home. I’m not a huge fan of video games. I had an original Nintendo when I was young, but this doesn’t help me much with all the new games and technology, unless I’m beating my hubby at Dr. Mario.
A few nights ago my youngest who is six, was next in line to defeat his opponent in a sword fight. He looked back at me and interjected”
“Well, aren’t you going to encourage me?”
“Yes, of course I am,” I replied, as I snapped back into my present reality. So I started in, championing my warrior son to do what was inside him and come against an enemy with a fury of jabs, slices and thrusts!
Though his tone was less than respectful, I found myself thinking about the culture that we had developed at home that he was accustomed to. He had his ears attentive to encouragement before he even needed it. He has subconsciously grown accustomed to have his heart lifted to hear truth, exhortation, and hope because we have set that standard in our home. He also realized that something was missing before he went into battle that he needed for success. He is actually an extremely healthy human being.
One of my favorite characters in the Bible is Barnabas. He never wrote a book of the Bible, but he discipled two men that wrote half the New Testament. He wasn’t labeled an Apostle or given a title but he welcomed the newly converted murderer, Saul of Tarsus, who became, arguably, one of the greatest apostolic leaders of the early church. Can you imagine what would have happened if he hadn’t embraced Paul? Even his name, Barnabas, means son of encouragement. He chose to embrace the ministry of encouragement, as I believe all Christians should do.
We are called to be imitators of God (Ephesians 5:1). The Father’s heart purposes to encourage His children and have them know the support that is always available to them. We get to do this. Release, remind and rescue the discouraged and reset them to a place of truth. It is too costly to live in discouragement for ANY length of time.
I recall a time I was frustrated with my process (which happens often) and I told my sister, “I feel like I am putting a puzzle together cardboard side up all while Father God is standing in the door way just watching to see how I do, waiting for me to finish.” To which she snapped me back to a place of truth by saying, “Then you’re believing a lie. A GOOD Father would stand at the door and encourage His kid the entire time. ‘You’ve got this, one more piece, you’re amazing, I know you can do this!'”
I’ve never forgotten that conversation with her. I had wrong thinking that lead me to feel like He was just as frustrated with me as I was in my process. I WAS believing a lie!!
To be encouraged means to live in courage. We need to come along side of each other in good and bad times and speak what is in our Good Father’s heart. This is what real accountability is. I am taking an account of your ability and reminding you what truth and support you have in this moment!
I love the ministry of encouragement. It is my favorite aspect of ministry and life. I have chosen to set other people lives up in such away, that they won’t have to go around looking for encouragement. (Unless I am checking out during video games).
Redefined by Grace,
Born and raised in Southern California, Christina Andriese currently lives in Murrieta, CA with her husband of 10 years, Ian, and their three incredible children – Aria, Ethan and Luke.
Christina loves to take in any and every opportunity to connect with people’s hearts and to encourage them to become the best version of themselves. Her dream is to see the church awaken to her full potential – to see humanity walk in freedom – ignited by hope, empowered to dream, and equipped to operate out of the resurrection power that Jesus provides!
When she isn’t homeschooling, being a chauffeur, ministering or working, Christina enjoys napping, going to the beach and reading.