Therefore if you have any encouragement from being united with Christ, if any comfort from his love, if any common sharing in the Spirit, if any tenderness and compassion, then make my joy complete by being like-minded, having the same love, being one in spirit and of one mind. Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves, not looking to your own interests but each of you to the interests of the others.
—Philippians 2:2-4 NIV
Do I offer hope? Do I encourage others when they are unable to encourage themselves? Am I sensitive to someone's hurt, or do I unconsciously throw fuel on the fire of their pain with casual words? Do I put the needs of others before my own, or do I find a way to “just do enough”? In my words or actions, I speak either encouragement or defeat to another person. I speak life or death to another heart.
As much as each one of us might like it to be, His life in us is not about what we want or how we feel or how we might like to prosper. It is about what He desires for us to sacrificially become for the sake of others. His desire is for us to love others as He loves us—to tenderly and compassionately give ourselves away expecting nothing in return. Freely He gave. Freely we care called to give. He desires for us to encourage and speak life to those trapped in despair and pain—to bless those who are down-trodden with the healing presence of His love.
Now I look at my life. Whose needs do I talk about—who am I concerned about? Does my heart break for anyone other than myself? If my life is only about me, I offer nothing of value. If I want to see with His eyes, hear with His ears, and understand with His Spirit, I give myself away. I put another life before my own. I love with His love, and encourage with His grace and truth.
I want my life to be broken and spilled out as He was broken and spilled out for me. I want no masks that veil my heart. Revival of heart never holds back. It is always seen in loving action. I long to bring Him joy by encouraging with the love and grace He has brought me. I do not have to be perfect to give myself away. He uses my brokenness. If I encourage from my own weakness, I will strengthen my own heart. It is in giving myself away that I shall receive. And it is in receiving that I am blessed to give again.
© 2017 Lynn Lacher