Wednesday, July 1, 2009

funny looking fruit...

I got a completely random, totally unexpected text message last week that absolutely made my day, if not my month!
This precious girl who is without a doubt blessed with the gift of encouragement will never know how much her sweet words meant to me, but they spoke volumes to my heart, my self-esteem, and honestly, my ego (let's admit it. we all need a little pick-me-up once in a while!)
In the following days, I've been so attentive to the bits of encouragement I've received from other people, and been disappointed in how seldom I hand them out.
I'm very good at the girl game. And I mean VERY good! Basically, I'm a pro. You know what I'm talking about...."Oh, I love your dress!" "Thanks, I just threw it on. And by the way I love your purse. It's very unique!"......We all do it. Girl or not. Every time we receive a compliment or bit of encouragement, we're quick to explain it away and give with a (typically) insincere, yet seemingly kind, response.
Why do I need to wait for a compliment in order to give one? Why can't I just say "thank you" in response to the encouragement I receive?
I'm looking closely for opportunities to encourage others, and working alongside great Godly guys and girls this summer is offering countless chances. I want to be an encourager. I don't want to be known because of the compliments I can earn, but by the encouragement I give.

"Therefore, through Him let us continually offer up to God a sacrifice of praise, that is, the fruit of our lips that confess His name." Hebrews 13:15

The fruit of my lips is my speech, and far too often my fruit only bears resemblance to myself. I want my fruit to show that it comes from a tree that is rooted deeply in the Lord and reaches out to others, continually offering encouragement and always giving praise to the only One who's truly worthy.

Do you have any cool stories about times when encouragement you've received has been a blessing? Or maybe when you've been the encourager and been blessed in return? I'd love to hear!

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