Therefore encourage one another and build one another up, just as you are doing. 1 Thessalonians 5:11 (ESV)
It’s been said that the “whole world is a stage and everyone plays a part.” Within my immediate family, I am the heroine playing many different roles–wife, mother, daughter, sister.
Some roles I “rehearsed for”. For the role of wife, there were several callbacks and a few rejections. The other roles, I inherited on the day that I took center stage (my birthday). These roles are challenging, requiring much prayer and patience.
As I reflect on the activities of this week, I considered this thought. What role did I play in the life of those I came into contact with this week? How well did I play my part?
- Was I the villain–the antagonist who is always trying to interrupt the plans of others?
- Was I a supporting actress–insuring that the lead actor and actress had what they needed to “shine” and deliver the story line?
We have a choice as to how we respond to those God places in our path. We can either be a help or a hindrance; a bearer of encouragement or the purveyor of strife.
The word encouragement originated in the 15th century from the French word encoragier—en which means “cause” and corage that means “courage.” As I look around our world and yes, our churches too, there is a need for us to “cause courage”. The role requires minimal rehearsal time and is easy to play–a kind word, a smile, a soft touch on the shoulder. Let God’s Word begin to frame your role.
- Let no corrupting talk come out of your mouths, but only such as is good for building up, as fits the occasion, that it may give grace to those who hear. Ephesians 4:29
- And let us consider how to stir up one another to love and good works, not neglecting to meet together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another, and all the more as you see the Day drawing near. Hebrews 10:24-25
The Apostle Paul spoke often about encouragement. When his plans to visit the church at Thessalonica fell through, he sent in his place Timothy to establish and encourage them in their faith. Timothy played the supporting role of “brother, minister of God, and fellow laborer in the gospel of Christ” (1 Thess. 3:1-2).
Everyday we are to go forth in the name of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ to play a critical role in this fallen world. Jesus’ message to His disciples in the 1st century hold true for believers today:
“Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you.” (Matt 28:19-20)
How well are you playing your part on the stage of life?