This past Sunday night my pastor husband preached an incredible message on encouragement. We all will have times in our lives when we need encouragement. He gave three points:
1. Encourage yourself in the Lord
2. Encourage others in the Word
3. Encourage others in the Service of God
I really enjoyed the message and must say, I was convicted. Lately, it seems my husband has been very busy, my oldest is working and preparing to head to college soon, and well, I get a little lonely. Please tell me you've been there... feeling alone and as though all you do goes unnoticed? Surely, I am not the only lady that has felt this way. Well, this message reminded me that I need to encourage myself. I can do this by encouraging others. It is true and honestly, it really does work.
Being in the ministry is a wonderful life, but it has its days when one questions, "Is this worth it?" One can start to think, "Is what I am doing making a difference?" Our work for Jesus is NEVER in vain. We may not always see results (or we think we can't see them), but if we are patient, in time we are able to see the work of our labor. As my dad often reminds me of the verse found in 1 Corinthians 15:58, "Therefore, my beloved brethren, be ye stedfast, unmoveable, always abouding in the work of the Lord, forasmuch as ye know that your labor is not in vain in the Lord."
A life lived for Christ is not in vain and the labors are worth every effort. I was reminded of this by way of a note from a former teenager (now, grown and married serving the Lord). She wrote to thank me for all I had done to invest in her life during her teen years. She was very kind with her words and my heart was so moved. I thought back to many sleepless nights, trips taken to camp, prayers shared, burdens discussed and I am so thankful that my husband and I did not quit when things got tough. I am thankful that we found the strength to encourage ourselves in the Lord and we kept going.
My life is different now being a pastor's wife and I have to say, there are days when I would rather retreat and hide. It isn't easy being "in the fishbowl" as I have heard said, but I will say, it is worth it if a life can be changed, helped or encouraged. I can't imagine my life any other way....I love my husband and I am convinced that God desires to use him for His work.
I started this post by telling about my husband's message...it was a GREAT one! I used that to say during times of feeling like what you do is for nought, take hope...find ENCOURAGEMENT in the Lord and realize you are not alone.
Friend, have you been discouraged lately? Do you think what you do is for nothing? Do you feel like noone notices? The best solution is to ENCOURAGE yourself in the Lord. I promise it works. Find someone else to be an encouragement to and you will be amazed what it does for your own spirit.
I had to do a little soul searching after this message and I sure am glad that God spoke to me!
If you'll excuse me, I need to go write someone a note!
Until next time...
From my Heart,