In this life, you will never know how important your words are to someone, until you offer words of comfort and consolation in their time of need. When you are in distress, you don’t need someone rough near you. You don’t need someone around you-whose major goal is to rub salt on your wound. All you need are words that revive you and lifts your head. I remember when I lost my job. The people I ran to were all set before me “maybe” by satan to just wound me deeper. I was so hurt the more after leaving their office if not home. I felt like God hated me, yet the truth is, he never does. Imagine running to people who runs programs for men, people you look-up in ministry and you have a high value of them, and you are confident  you can confide in them, then when you leave their office, you go out crying more and wondering “why” you even thought of going to their offices or homes.
What some people don’t know is this, sometimes you just need to remove a handkerchief to wipe someone’s tear-and just give someone one word-“it shall be well! Words matter to a bereaved person, sick patient, a man or woman whose house is about to be auctioned, an abused child, a divorced lady or anyone facing issues at his work place. Every believer is called to be an encourager. It does not matter the circumstances you are in, but all of us have a word of life to give to a needy soul around us. By the grace of God, I have at times removed the thought of someone killing himself –by the words of encouragement. Someone who feels so low of themselves can do anything to feel accepted. Lovers are prone to feel unworthy when the person they dated and loved, withdraws his or her love, and even talked badly to them. When such a person comes your way, all she wants to hear is someone gives them words that revives them again, rather than preaching to them against sexual immorality. She knew she gave in to sex and have been used for long, until he got tired of her- so such messages of hate and lectures on why she gave in to sex so easily and so early does not comfort their wounded soul, but giving hope of a bright future makes the difference. Barnabas was known in the early church as “son of encouragement. He always at the nick of time, he could give a word to the apostle and those involved in God’s work. [Acts 4:36]. I have always believed it was his personal choice to be an encourager that turned his name to be changed from Joseph to Barnabas.
Jesus is the master of encouragement. Imagine how it felt when Jesus gave the woman involved in adultery-a second chance, even when all the men around her were baying for her blood.  When they were questioning him and giving reason as to why she should be killed, Jesus said to them, “Let any one of you who is without sin be the first to throw a stone at her. John8:7. I believe those words, as they cut through those who wanted to kill her, they brought comfort to the woman.
Yes, someone of our friends, when coming to us for help, maybe in a messed-up state, but do you stand in their life as jury and judge or you look for ways of reviving their already broken spirit, without condoning their sin.
Sometimes what draws people to God is not our judgmental attitudes but our care and love, in the moments when they know they’ve wronged us and have no one to run to, except us. When the prodigal son thought of coming back home, all his thoughts were shrouded with thoughts of doubt, of whether he will be accepted or not. He even rehearsed what to tell his father. He said in his heart,” I will set out and go back to my father and say to him: Father, I have sinned against heaven and against you.  I am no longer worthy to be called your son; make me like one of your hired servants. So he got up and went to his father. (Luke 15:16-20).

Can you imagine if his father saw him, in his fallen state coming home ashamed, and all he could do was to chase him away? It would have been terrible but the bible says,” while he was still a long way off, his father saw him and was filled with compassion for him; he ran to his son, threw his arms around him and kissed him. (Luke 15:21) What a great example of a man who knows how to bring back a son home, even when he knew he was a mess to the home. Even the son did not believe it. Out of guilt he said, ”Father, I have sinned against heaven and against you. I am no longer worthy to be called your son.’

The father seems to have pretended to not have heard what the son said. All he cared for was receiving his son home. He said to his servants ‘Quick! Bring the best robe and put it on him. Put a ring on his finger and sandals on his feet.  Bring the fattened calf and kill it. Let’s have a feast and celebrate. For this son of mine was dead and is alive again; he was lost and is found.’ So they began to celebrate. Luke 15:21-24)

Can you imagine with me how relieving those words were to this son, from the father?  All of us need such a parent in our lives. Some people cannot return home because they know, and are sure of the negative attitudes the parents have towards them have can never change. This father, though disappointed with his son, he ran to meet his son-hugged him and made a party. This is a party for someone who thought he was not worthy. The same is always the attitude of someone who feels unwanted and lost direction for life. Someone who has been sacked at work, someone who has been involved in a scandal that blows the family name apart, when they come home, they know what they’ve done  is evil and the reputation of the family name is at stake, but as a brother, sister or parent, you hold the key to give the right word that makes them to change, rather than go away from home forever.

Jesus always stood to listen to those on the streets, healed their problems, embraced kids with love and when he left us, his words to the believer were “Do not let your hearts be troubled. Trust in God; trust also in me. [John 14:1].
 Later, he tells us “In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.”[John 16:33]. What a reassurance from the Lord to the believer today. The world we live in today is full of trouble but we have a word from the Lord to bank on, he overcame the world.
One of the amazing facts of  the life of a believer is this, no matter what you are going through, even when you are troubled, people will run to you for encouragement. When David was running away from King Saul, to save his life, he escaped to the cave of Adullam, but when his brothers and all his father’s house heard it, they went down there to him. And everyone who was in distress, and everyone who was in debt, and everyone who was bitter in soul, gathered to him. And he became commander [read encourager] over them. This were about four hundred men.[1 Samuel 22:1-2]
Saint of God, with these hard economic times across the world, what are you doing to encourage those who come to you with their troubles? People who have messed up their finances and are in deep debt don’t come to you to get reminded on why they didn’t save for the hard times! Infact, majority know it’s because they never saved for the future, that’s why they’re where they’re. You don’t need to rub on their wound with salt, but you can easily tell they,” I may not understand much what you’re going through, but I know it shall be well. Words of comfort and care is all that people are looking for from you. Indeed you might be the only voice of God that someone needs to overcome an addiction, drunkenness, debt, overcome a rape case and bring healing to the  growing number of emotionally challenged individuals in our midst. I have chosen to be that encourager, but how about you?  Remember God comforts us in all our affliction, so that we may be able to comfort those who are in any affliction too, with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God. [2 Corinthians 1:4] To all believers, that is our major call from above. Be an encourager to someone today. God bless you

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