Phyllis Beveridge Nissila
THESE are the times that try men’s souls. The summer soldier and the sunshine patriot will, in this crisis, shrink from the service of their country; but he that stands by it now, deserves the love and thanks of man and woman. Tyranny, like hell, is not easily conquered; yet we have this consolation with us, that the harder the conflict, the more glorious the triumph. What we obtain too cheap, we esteem too lightly: it is dearness only that gives every thing its value. Heaven knows how to put a proper price upon its goods; and it would be strange indeed if so celestial an article as FREEDOM should not be highly rated. – Thomas Paine, December 23, 1776
People are driven, it seems, especially these divide-and-conquer days of global chaos and conflict, to tear each other down not build each other up.
Thomas Paine certainly lived during trying political times in the American Revolutionary era, and his famous text on encouragement is frequently quoted. The first sentence was even on the old typing tests in school, if you are old enough to remember that.
But even in “normal times” an encourager is often hard to find, even where encouragement ought to be part of the ebb and flow of communication: in families, at work, in churches, at school–but it is often lacking there, too.
May I encourage all of us to encourage at least one other person today.
And to take our own encouragement if not from another, from God, Himself (Father, Son, and Holy Spirit), Who gives not only encouragement but much more to those who put their faith and trust in Him. Here is a litany:
- Jehovah – The Lord – Exodus 6:2-3
- Jehovah-Adon Kal Ha’arets- Lord of Earth – Josh 3:13
- Jehovah-Bara – Lord Creator – Isaiah 40:28
- Jehovah-Chatsahi – Lord my Strength – Psalm 27:1
- Jehovah-Chereb – Lord the Sword – Deut. 33:29
- Jehovah-Eli – Lord my God – Psalm 18:2
- Jehovah-Elyon – Lord Most High – Psalm 38:2
- Jehovah-Gador Milchamah – Mighty in Battle – Ps 24:8
- Jehovah-Ganan – Lord Our Defense – Ps 89:18
- Jehovah-Go’el – Lord My Redeemer – Is. 49:26, 60:16
- Jehovah-Hamelech – Lord King – Psalm 98:6
- Jehovah-Hashopet – Lord My Judge – Judges 11:27
- Jehovah-Helech ‘Olam – Lord King Forever Ps10:16
- Jehovah-Hoshe’ah – Lord Saves – Psalm 20:9
- Jehovah-Jireh – Provider – Gen. 22:14, I John 4:9, Philip 4:19
- Jehovah-Kabodhi – Lord my Glory – Psalm 3:3
- Jehovah-Kanna – Lord Jealous – Ex 34:14
- Jehovah-Keren-Yish’i – Horn of Salvation – Ps 18:2
- Jehovah-M’Kaddesh – Sanctifier – I Corinthians 1:30
- Jehovah-Machsi – Lord my Refuge – Psalm 91:9
- Jehovah-Magen – Lord my Shield – Deut. 33:29
- Jehovah-Ma’oz – Lord my Fortress – Jer. 16:19
- Jehovah-Mephalti – Lord my Deliverer – Psalm 18:2
- Jehovah-Metshodhathi – Lord my Fortress – Psalm 18:2
- Jehovah-Misqabbi – Lord my High Tower – Psalm 18:2
- Jehovah-M’gaddishcem – Lord my Sanctifier – Ex 31:13
- Jehovah-Naheh – Lord who Smites – Ezekiel 7:9
- Jehovah-Nissi – Banner – I Chronicles 29:11-13
- Jehovah-Rohi – Shepherd – Psalm 23
- Jehovah-Rophe – Healer – Isaiah 53:4,5
- Jehovah-Sabaoth – Lord of Hosts – I Sam 1:3
- Jehovah-Sel’i – Lord my Rock – Psalm 18:2
- Jehovah-Shalom – Peace – Isaiah 9:6, Rom 8:31-35
- Jehovah-Shammah – Present – Hebrews 13:5
- Jehovah-Tsidkenu – Righteousness – I Cor 1:30
- Jehovah-Tsori – Lord my Strength – Psalm 19:14
- Jehovah-Yasha – Lord my Savior – Isaiah 49:26
- Jehovah-‘Ez-Lami – Lord my Strength – Ps 28:7
- Jehovah-‘Immeku – Lord Is With You – Judges 6:12
- Jehovah-‘Izoa Hakaboth – Lord Strong -Mighty – Ps 24:8
- Jehovah-‘Ori – Lord my Light – Psalm 27:1
- Jehovah-‘Uzam – Lord Strength in Trouble – Is 49:26 (source)
There are plenty of exhorters, admonishers, and critics out there already.
And we sometimes need what they offer.
But in the coin of relationships, encouragement is gold.
When I taught writing, I made it a point to begin with the student’s strengths, first, then cover areas where I could help him or her gain more skill. It took a little extra time, but the approach was always beneficial–for both student and teacher.
I’m celebrating YOUR strengths in this post, whoever you are and whatever you have accomplished, as well as your works in progress. Stay the course. God has given you gifts and talents fit for you–and beneficial for such a time as this. Savor what is your passion, and persevere. And remember, not all will accept or understand it. That’s okay.
But your best encourager is God, especially in a world darkening with evil.
Seek Him today.