Wednesday, July 24, 2013
By Mark Jennings
PROVERBS 27 17: AS IRON SHARPENS IRON SO ONE MAN SHARPENS ANOTHER.
The lord said to Moses Send some men to explore the land of Canaan which I am giving the Israelites’.
So Moses sends in 12 men. All of them are leaders representing each of the 12 tribes. Among them are Caleb son of Jephunneh and Joshua son of Nun.
Moses assembles the men and he says to them go up into that land. Check out the people that live there. Are they weak or strong? What kind of land do they live in, is it good or bad, is it fertile or poor? What kind of towns do they live in? Are they unwalled or fortified. Tell us if it has trees and try your best to bring back some of its fruit.
So the spies go in and they get to the valley they call Eshcol.Here they find fantastic clusters of grapes. One cluster is so big they throw it over a pole and 2 men carry it. After 40 days of exploration they return.
We see this picture of the entire Israelite nation all assembling, excited at the return of their leaders. VERSE 27 “ We went into the land to which you sent us, and it does flow with milk and honey. Here is its fruit.” The fruit must have been enticing for people who had been in the desert. But 10 of the spies start to relate to the nation that the people that live there are powerful and that their cities are fortified and large. They then start to tell the Israelites’ about the nations who live there, painting a dim picture that possession is futile. The crowd starts to murmur and becomes agitated.
Caleb throws his hand up. WHOA! He silences the entire assembly. We CAN take it he says. We should go up and take possession of the land for we can certainly do it.
But then the rest of the spies start to stir up, and incite the crowd. They say,
“The land we explored devours those living in it. There are giants in the land. “They finish off by saying we seemed like grasshoppers in our own eyes and we looked the same to them.
We have a situation here where some people see grasshoppers and some see grapes.
THE ENCOURAGER HAS COURAGE. The encourager is willing to go for the fruit.
STORY OF THE WOMAN WHO HAD RECEIVED SOME BAD NEWS FROM THE MEDICAL CENTER IN THE RESTAURANT. I WANTED TO PRAY FOR HER BUT TOO CROWDED, NO COURAGE. THE LORD EMPTIED OUT THE RESTAURANT......WE THEN WENT AND PRAYED FOR HER AND I GAVE HER THIS VERSE
JOHN 16 24 UNTIL NOW YOU HAVE NOT ASKED FOR ANYTHING IN MY NAME. ASK AND YOU WILL RECEIVE AND YOUR JOY WILL BE COMPLETE.
SHE WAS TOTALLY ENCOURAGED!!
THE ENCOURAGER ALWAYS SEES THE BIG PICTURE AND WILL LEAD PEOPLE THROUGH IT.
Encouragers have total faith in Gods sovereignty. They not only see the big picture, they understand the full picture. They draw on their faith and they use it. Because of this they will help lead people through difficult territory. In NUMBERS CHAPTER 14 it talks about that night all the people raised their voices and wept out aloud. They start to say it would be better back in Egypt. Moses and AARON fall on their feet and Joshua and Caleb out of frustration tear their clothes. In verse 8 they plead with the crowd and say the Lord will lead us into that land do not be afraid for the Lord is with us.
Encourages have the faith to see past the present difficulties and problems. Joshua and Caleb understand the full promise that God has given them. They only see a positive outcome no matter what. HE WILL LEAD US INTO THAT LAND, A LAND FLOWING WITH MILK AND HONEY. They see the grapes, they see the milk, and they see the honey.
Their faith helps them understand and have confidence in the big picture. As the Lord leads them they will lead people. If you are going to encourage people out of a desert you have to believe you have a good place to take them to.
STORY OF THE ALCOHOLIC. ENCOURAGING HER TO LEAN ON A LONG LOST FAITH TO GIVE UP DRINKING. LETTER IN POST, A YEAR LATER SAYING SHE HAD STOPPED DRINKING AND NOW WAS A CHRISTIAN.
A simple word of encouragement can bring a person out of a dark pit. It can lift that person to a higher place and move them ahead stronger than ever. When someone is encouraged, they are inspired; they are activated and have confidence.
PROVERBS 16:24, Gracious words are like a honeycomb, sweetness to the soul and health to the body.
PROVERBS 25:11 A word fitly spoken is like apples of gold in a setting of silver.
PROVERBS 12:25 Anxiety in a man’s heart weighs him down but a good word makes him glad.
ENCOURAGES ARE ALWAYS LOOKING FOR PEOPLE TO ENCOURAGE.
It’s our job to encourage. As we have been encouraged we encourage others. The act of encouragement is a responsibility that we all have as a follower of Christ. Joshua, who encouraged his fellow Israelites’ into the Promised Land, was a forerunner to Jesus who encourages us into the territory of GODS promises. Jesus spent his whole ministry doing this. So much so that it is estimated that 100 million bibles are sold each year. People want to read it. The messages and stories of JESUS are so encouraging THEY PRINTED it 4 times. Matthew Mark Luke and John.
Here is a wonderful opportunity I had. Another story.
STORY WOMAN IN TEXAS. GAVE HER A CUDDLE AND ENCOURAGED HER WHEN SHE TOLD ME OF A CRUEL HUSBAND AND A SON WHO WAS DYING OF CANCER. ENCOURAGED HER TO CALL ON GOD TO COMFORT HER.
HOW GOD ENCOURAGED ME ONCE............. WHILE GOING DOWN TO THE PUMPSHED ONE COLD STARRY NIGHT I LOOKED UP AND ASKED WHERE GOD LIVED, I WAS ZAPPED WITH AN ELECTRIC SHOCK THAT MADE MY HAIR STAND UP ON END. IT WAS PLEASANT AND LASTED A WHILE. IT WAS GODS WAY OF SAYING I LIVE RIGHT HERE. STILL GET THAT TO THIS DAY, ITS GODS WAY OF ENCOURAGING ME AND I BELIEVE ITS HIS RIGHT HAND ON MY SHOULDER.
$1300 DOLLAR STORY: I WAS BROKE ON THE FARM HAD 1300$ BILLS TO PAY, STRUNG OUT, TIRED REACHED MY LIMIT, DIDN'T WANT TO BUT I ASKED GOD FOR THE MONEY, $1300 ARRIVES IN POST NEXT DAY. INLAND REVENUE WENT 3 YEARS IN MY BOOKS TO FIND THEY OWED ME.
Romans 12 8 indicates that some people have a special gift to encourage. It says if it is serving let him serve if it is teaching let him teach if it is encouraging let him encourage.......... YOU MIGHT SAY IT’S ALRIGHT FOR YOU.............. You might have the gift of encouraging. MY FRIEND A CONSERVATIVE CHRISTIAN FOUND THAT GIFTS CAN BE ASKED FOR, ASKED GOD IF HE COULD SPEAK IN TONGUES GOD ANSWERED HIM AND PROVIDED THE GIFT...........................ASK FOR THE GIFT OF ENCOURAGEMENT
TRY AND ASK FOR IT.
Encouraging people is one of the easiest ways of spreading light into a dark world. We live in a world fixated on bad news and negative dramas. STORY OF TV SO WILD WITH BAD RUBBISH I THROW TV WHILE STILL WARM IN THE DUMP.
My story THROWN OFF A HORSE, PARALYZED ONLY CAN MOVE MY EYES SURGEONS OPERATE ON VERTEBRAE TO LET THE SPINAL CORD HAVE MORE ROOM, WALK OUT OF HOSPITAL IN 2 WEEKS. ENCOURAGED BY ISAIAH SEEING THE ANGELS IN HEAVEN. DID NOT ASK GOD TO HEAL ME, JUST PRAISED AND PRAISED HIM. MY FRIENDS AND CHURCH PRAYED FOR ME. THEIR ENCOURAGEMENT GAVE ME THE STRENGTH TO WALK AGAIN.
The sun is a 150 million km from earth. If we stay out in its light it will burn our skin. If the sun was a soccer ball the earth is the size of a match head. There is another sun out there, a star called ANTARES it makes our sun look like a pinhead. Yet when we are in heaven, the sun and moon will not shine for the LORD is light enough.
When Moses came off the mountain with the 2 tablets his face was radiant and shone. The whole Israelite nation was shocked.
Wouldn’t it be great if our faces would shine, wouldn’t it be great if we reflected the glory of the lord. Wouldn’t be good if we could walk out that door, today, the ....... next week.... find someone to uplift, encourage one another and encourage others to taste the grapes and enter into the land of milk and honey.
MATTHEW 5: 16.