Where do you go when you need encouragement? As you saw in my last blog, God knows exactly how to comfort us and that we don’t even need to wait for it. So why wouldn’t we automatically turn to Him first to meet our needs?
Because we often just don’t know any better!
I remember a time early in my Christian walk when I was dealing with a difficult problem. My first thought was to run to my mentor, Claylene. But before I picked up the phone I heard God speak to my spirit saying, “No. Come to Me first.” So I did. It turned out that I didn’t have to call her.
I got all that I needed directly from God. It’s ok to seek help from others, but…
Our Redeemer wants us to seek Him first.
Plus, sometimes there isn’t anyone else to whom we can turn, as we see in the following biblical example:
When David and his men came to Ziklag, they found it destroyed by fire and their wives and sons and daughters taken captive…. David was greatly distressed because the men were talking of stoning him; each one was bitter in spirit because of his sons and daughters. But David found strength in the LORD his God. (1 Sam 30:3, 6 emphasis added)
David had no one to whom he could turn, except the Lord. And, of course, the Lord came through. He told David precisely what to do and David regained everything (see 1 Samuel 30:7-19).
Additionally, unlike people, God always knows how to encourage each of us specifically. What encourages me, may not encourage you. It depends on many factors including our personality, past, purpose, and maturity level.
There are many biblical examples and many from my own life as well.
For example, during the last summer of his life on earth, my husband had many complications and hospitalizations in his fight against cancer. Before that summer’s ordeal began, I was scheduled to teach a Bible Study. When complications arose, everyone would have understood if I had cancelled it. But I needed it! Teaching kept me in God’s Word and close to my sisters in Christ. It helped me to stay focused on Jesus and my God-given purpose. Teaching enabled me to not give in to utter hopelessness. If you had been in my shoes, that may not have encouraged you, but it certainly did me!
There have been countless other times and ways in which God specifically met my needs. In times of grief, depression, loneliness, inadequacy, doubt, fear, insignificance, and so on, my Lord has met each and every need in a way designed for me.
In any given moment God knows exactly how to reassure us with whatever is most necessary and best—whether it’s His love, security, guidance, or even a reprimand.
Even when we don’t go to God, He knows how to encourage our hearts. But we can speed up the process by going to Him and His Word.
For everything that was written in the past was written to teach us, so that through endurance and the encouragement of the Scriptures we might have hope. (Rom 15:4)
We can put ourselves in the position to be refreshed by just asking the Lord, like David did:
[In talking directly to God] Say to my soul, “I am your salvation.” (Ps 35:3)
I know now that God is the BEST Encourager. Now so do you.
From this point on I will choose to go to Him first. Will you?
So until next time my friends,
May our Lord Jesus Christ himself and God our Father, who loved us and by his grace gave us eternal encouragement and good hope, encourage your hearts and strengthen you in every good deed and word. (2 Thess 2:16-17, emphasis added)
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Scripture taken from THE HOLY BIBLE: NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION®. NIV®. Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984 by Biblica. All rights reserved worldwide