The Directing Force Behind Encouragement - In His Grip - Week of August 31, 2015
The Directing Force Behind Encouragement
by Sharon W. Betters
Encouragement Principle: We can be God’s promise keepers by giving to others from the riches of our inheritance.
The better we understand the righteousness that has been credited to us and the forgiveness that has been extended to us in Christ, the more we will want to give to others what we are receiving from Christ. I am passionate about helping women experience the resurrection power that flows from intimacy with Christ regardless of their circumstances. One of the beauties of resurrection power is its unique application to each individual. God does not make cookie cutter Christians. And when we understand our position in Christ, we are able to express our identity through the unique gifts He gives to each of us. God calls us into a relationship with Him, and it is that relationship which gives us the desire and ability to obey Him.
When we begin to understand God’s love, our passion for Him pushes us beyond our usual limits and causes us to meet people’s needs without expecting thanks or credit. Blessings, rejoicing and delight are the eventual side benefits of obedience that flows from a loving heart.
I am learning that tearful disappointments do not mean God is absent but that He is walking through the fire with me. The future may change the ways I wait on Him, but it cannot change who He is, how much He loves me, or my calling to serve Hm. Please listen to my words, still hot from the refiner’s fire:
Circumstances do not change who you are. Your primary calling is to reflect the character and nature of God. Whether you are experiencing pain or prosperity, you have many treasures to offer people. When God calls you to offer the treasures of your inheritance, you are on holy ground. He is doing “soul work.” And He is giving you the privilege of fulfilling His promises in a needy heart. This is grace.
Reprinted with Permission from Treasures of Encouragement Planner by Sharon W. Betters, P & R Publishing
In His grip,
Sharon W. Betters
Digging Deeper: Hebrews 10:19 – 25
Treasures in Darkness: A Grieving Mother Shares Her Heart by Sharon W. Betters
Grief permeates our lives. Whether through personal loss or the dark places in a friend’s life, each broken place confronts us with faith questions. Though written by a bereaved mother, this book is for anyone struggling to find a new level of normal in the midst of traumatic loss. Each chapter is filled with scripture, Sharon’s journal entries after the death of her son, the story behind hymns and music that encouraged Sharon to trust God in the darkness, and questions that help the reader focus on the theme of the chapter.
Sharon encourages readers to journal their own journey to help them lean into the pain of their own lives – whether fresh or buried for years. The pages from her journals reveal her conversation with God as she tried to reconcile His sovereignty and His love. Her transparency and willingness to dig deep into her own sorrow in order to help others convinces the reader that God really is sovereign and can be trusted, no matter what life brings.
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