Recently I came across this video, I was going to write a blog on encouragement, but Michael Zigarelli touches on it so well with the bible! I want to highlight some features though (spoilers tee-hee). An aspect I want to touch on is the aspect he covers from Proverbs 3: 27:
One thing that stops us from this is underestimating the power of encouragement. I want you to think back to a time when someone really affirmed you, encouraged you or have given you a well done - not limited to when you have 'deserved it' for the time being, but just for being you - and remember how it made you feel. One thing that recurs in the bible many times is the human desire that is a longing for relationship, we see this in many parts of our lives today. I personally see it as, perhaps, a fundamental part of us, and encourage you - pun not intended ;P - to make a habit of encouraging other people. Take Michael Zigarelli's example for instance, make something of it, put one coin or a good substitute in your pocket and encourage one person a day. If you achieve that then try to have that coin, or what have you, placed back into the initial pocket.
There are many things that discourage us, and in particular it's the things we compare ourselves with that trick us to think we need to become like them in a certain manner, when it should really be looking to God and thanking him for who we are. It can be hard to do that if the people around us don't give us encouragement; this is why we should tell our folks or flatmates we appreciate them putting up with us, tell your friend that they are looking like they flourished from God's good soil or something - don't underestimate the power of encouragement, and here's a witty quote that sums it up by John Maxwell: "...man does not live on bread alone: sometimes he needs a little buttering up.”
Here's the video for those interested! Chea :)