July 6, 2009 "Encouragement"

Triumphant Victorious Reminders
Inspired by the Holy Spirit
By: Teresa Criswell

"But command Joshua, and encourage him and strengthen him; for he shall go over before this people, and he shall cause them to inherit the land which you will see.'"
~ Deuteronomy 3:28 ~ NKJV

"Encouragement can be a cause of great wealth. Discouragement can be a cause of great poverty." I heard those words in my spirit this morning. It was like hearing a proverb when I read Deuteronomy 3:28.

Have you ever been encouraged by many people and then there is that one person who discourages you (not constructive criticism, just plain discouragement), what usually happens? I know with me one discouraging word (If I allow it) tends to overshadow all the other encouraging words that I have heard throughout the day.

I ask the Lord, "Why do we allow discouragement to overrule encouragement?" Guess what word I heard loud and clear? 'Pride'. Can you believe that? Pride? "Lord, how can this be? It's not my fault that they were a discouraging mouthpiece." After I said that to myself, obviously God heard my moaning and it was as though I heard Him say, "The mouthpiece is only that...a mouthpiece. You don't have to eat on their regurgitation of discouragement, you have a choice to walk away and not receive it. You have the ultimate choice to receive it. That is what your free will was intended for. Your free will was not intended for you to reject Me, it was intended to reject the lies." Wow! Free will from God was intended to be a gift to us but ultimately to Him.

Then it was revealed. Pride holds us back from the abundance that God has readily available for us. It is our 'free will' or choice to receive the words of encouragement or discouragement.

The encouragement is of God's abundance readily available to keep us going, to progress, actively going forward. Pride holds us in a place where we either become complacement or we end up regressing to the old ways. Many times if we aren't constantly looking to the Source of Encouragement we will be worse off than before.

When those words of encouragement are offered and then that word of discouragement comes in, we immediately look inward and say, "I am nothing." Pride has us focus on the I and the me and the myself. I heard it said one day, "The trinity of humanism is Me, Myself and I."

I realized through this reminder of pride we must look to Our True Source of Encouragement, Jesus Christ. How? By the Holy Spirit who reveals Jesus Christ. When we look to Him the Author and Finisher of our Faith, we will choose to look away from the author and finisher of pride.

May you be encouraged today by the God we get to serve through Jesus Christ by the power of the Holy Spirit. With His great encouragement there is always a way to show where we can improve as we are led by His great, glorious love.

Discouragement doesn't offer a way to improve, it only causes the feelings of inadequacy to rise up. We begin to 'worship' the inadequacy, instead of worshipping the God who makes us adequate when we allow Him.

Encouragement offers hope and allows us to grow in the Lord. I pray I choose moment by moment to grow, progress and actively go forward.


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