Have you had the pleasure of being around someone who has the gift of encouragement? It is an amazing thing. Whether it comes naturally or is a habit developed through intentional practice, these people make everyone’s life better.
And the Lord tells us in Romans 12 that encouragement is a gift of the Spirit. One who encourages or exhorts can also be seen as giving joy, comforting and urging on.
When we do cooperative learning activities on campus, one of the things we look for in students is sharing positive feedback and exhorting one another to keep going and to do one’s best.
This does not come naturally in most cases. Students, being humans, can tend to be self-centered and critical. So it takes effort. It takes conscious choice. It takes practice. And, yes, I believe it takes the work of the Holy Spirit to turn kids towards the role of encourager.
We are emphasizing this gift of encouragement in practical ways here at SPLS. At this year’s Grandparents Day students will be sharing examples of people who, through the years, have built others up and blessed them. We look forward to hearing from the children. And we know many homes are also filled with reminders to build up, to encourage, to bring joy to others.
6 We have different gifts, according to the grace given to each of us. If your gift is prophesying, then prophesy in accordance with your[a]faith; 7 if it is serving, then serve; if it is teaching, then teach; 8 if it is to encourage, then give encouragement; if it is giving, then give generously; if it is to lead, do it diligently; if it is to show mercy, do it cheerfully. Romans 12:6-8
In His Children’s Service, Robert C. Boyd