Have you ever felt that nothing will ever be good enough – nothing that you do or say? It could be at work or at home. Maybe you’re trying to make friends at church, but you just don’t succeed. Maybe it’s your boss that just doesn’t care, except when you do something wrong, and then you do not hear the end of it.
It’s as if everybody is geared to be negative. When talking to your friends there’s bound to be one of them complaining about the weather being too hot or too wet, or about his job or his wife or his car that wouldn’t start this morning.
Negativity is everywhere, but at the time of the early church things were far worse. You paid for your faith with your life. If you were found guilty of being a Christian you were sent to jail – if you were lucky! The only other option was to be executed. Talk about a negative environment! It is within this context that Paul writes to the Thessalonians: “Therefore encourage one another and build each other up, just as in fact you are doing” (1 Thes 5:11). You and I don’t live in a country where Christians are persecuted, but the devil is also at work here and especially so amongst God’s children. If he can get us to be discouraged and to quit trying, he wins.
Sometimes it can be very difficult to stay positive in a world that is so depressing. But I found something amazing in God’s Word and since I’ve started to apply it, I’m doing much better. God commands His children to encourage one another. When I focus on building up my brother or sister in the Lord, I’m motivating and inspiring myself as well.
Let us use practical ways to encourage each other. We’ve all been at a dark place feeling it was the end of the world, but then somebody gave us a compliment or a hug out of the blue, making us feel we can face life again.
Let us be intentional and purposeful in building each other up.