At our house we’ve adopted a great conversation starter when we gather around the table for dinner at the end of the day. Each of us verbally notes our high for the day, then our low, and lastly the funny of our day. It always amazes me how some days we’ve spent all day together yet each of us has something different to point out. Side note: sometimes when it’s my husband’s turn to state his high for the day he’ll keenly rattle off the “high temperature” for the day…before giving us his true answer.☺️
These table conversations are important because they cause us to know one another’s hearts, feelings, cares, and concerns a little more. Our kids enjoy the idea of being the only one in the “family spotlight” for a few moments during their turn, highlighting whatever it is for the day that stuck out most to them. Often times these smaller talks lead to larger discussions, taking it to a deeper level where we can really reflect, analyze, and engage with one another.
Since you and I most likely won’t be sharing dinner any time soon I thought I’d share my high, low, and funny over this past week (via the blog). Please feel free to do the same in the comment section below if you wish.
My High: My sister-in-law has a brother who was visiting from out of town this past week. On Sunday morning all of us were at church together. During Pastor Bruce’s message I felt a strong urgency to pray for this young man so I quietly prayed for God to speak to his heart because I had no idea where his faith stood.
My sister-in-law text me this the next day: So I have something pretty cool to tell you… I didn’t know this until last night but (name) was talking to me and he told me that he doesn’t believe in God… But that at the service yesterday he felt that Pastor Bruce was talking right to him. And he has a lot of questions and I think really wants to believe… Would you or do you know someone that could talk with him?
I was super excited and contacted our youth pastor immediately since her brother is still pretty young, early to mid-twenties. We set up a meeting time for Tuesday morning at a little coffee shop in town. Pastor Trevor showed up with a study Bible and my sister-in-law showed up with her brother. The three of them visited, lots of questions were asked and answered, and at the end the most important question was presented. Would (he) accept the Gospel message as truth?…
And he did! Pastor Trevor prayed with him and warned him about upcoming obstacles that he’d face…that he might have to cut ties with relationships that might hinder his new faith. Rev Trev (that’s what we call him for fun) sent the new believer on his way with an NIV study Bible and lots of encouragement.
Friends, that kinda thing doesn’t happen by chance. God ordained all of that—we get to witness it, share the story with others, and marvel over His Holy Awesomeness.…I may have just made that word up…awesomeness??
My Low: This week brought about sad news when we learned a fellow church member passed away on Monday after a scheduled surgery. I didn’t know him personally but my husband did, and he was always so well spoken of. His family is humble and good Christian people. A few of his granddaughters are in youth group and some of the sweetest girls I know. His wife is one of the kindest women I’ve met and such an amazing mentor to ladies within our church. So my heart goes out to this family and I hurt so much for them over their loss. I’ve never cried so much for someone I unfortunately didn’t even know.
My Funny: My funny this week, isn’t necessarily a “hilarious-funny” but rather paradoxical and reassuring at the same time—trusting that God can handle all things.
It’s funny to me, in a peculiar sort of way, how these two polar-opposite happenings over this past week can (both) utilize the very same Bible verses for encouragement. I’ve cried so much for this family who lost their loved one yet I can gain insight and wisdom through God’s word. However through the same verses that I seek encouragement in grieving, I can also use to encourage a new believer in Christ as well. There’s peace and comfort for this Christian family who lost a husband, father, grandpa, brother, friend, etc. because they’ll look to God, just like this new believer will prevail as well—both will draw their hope from God’s promise.
VERSES ON ENCOURAGEMENT:
For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. John 3:16
If we live, we live for the Lord; and if we die, we die for the Lord. So, whether we live or die, we belong to the Lord. Romans 14:8
Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. Matthew 11:28-29
Be strong and take heart, all you who hope in the LORD. Psalm 31:24
Why do the same verses work in both of these circumstances? Because this man who passed away unexpectedly was a believer in Christ therefore he has eternal life where his soul now rest in Heaven…my sister in law’s brother, who just gave his life to Christ this past week, now has the promise of eternal life in Heaven also.
God’s word led both of these men to Christ.
Both scenarios point to Christ who gives hope, encouragement, and life.
Without our faith placed in Christ imagine the lack of hope and peace when a loved one passes away if he or she wasn’t a believer.
Our God is so caring and kind that He’s given us His word to learn and rely on so we can have the promise of eternal life by accepting Christ as our Savior. When we experience trials, life alterations, and new beginnings we gain hope and encouragement through scripture.
God’s word ALWAYS provides encouragement—no matter the time, no matter the place, no matter the situation.
The Bible, filled with direction and truth, shows how God has designed people to seek Him for guidance in the good times and bad alike—through highs and lows, so we can appreciate fun times as well.
God, Help us to see our need for you in all circumstances. Thank you for your word which is capable of guiding and directing us in all things. Thank you for the gift of your Son. It’s in Him we pray. Amen.