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December 2017

by Rev. Kelly Mitteis

O Therefore encourage one another and build each other up; just as in fact you are doing.
1 Thessalonians 5:11

In a book titled, The God Who Won't Let Go, author Dean Merrill tells the story of a man who was about to quit. Having lost his job as an office manager he signed on as a laborer with a construction crew. For someone who'd always worked in an office the work was back-breaking, the environment awful. No piped in music, only ear-ringing machine sound. No polite-casual banter among co-workers, now he was the target of verbal abuse by the other workers. Worst of all was the steady stream of criticism by boss, For (*#@) sake you (*@#%) can't you do anything right? I've never seen such a (*#@^) in all my life.

By the end of the second week he'd had enough. Friday was pay day. It would be his last as a laborer. Just before noon the boss came by. Handing him his pay envelope he spoke kindly for the first time. There's a woman working in the front office who knows you and asked me to give you this note. Says she takes care of your kids sometimes. The man opened his pay envelope to find a note that read, When one part of the body of Christ suffers, we all suffer with it. Just wanted you to know that I'm praying for you. The man stared at the note. He was stunned by the encouragement, just when he needed it most.

At one time or another we all feel like quitting. Sometimes quitting is the wise thing to do. But not always. Sometimes we just need encouragement. It comes in different forms; a kind word, a listening ear. Other times we need a firmer word. Regardless, when it comes just when it's needed most, it is an awesome experience.

No one knows better our need for encouragement than God. Daily He desires to lift us in and through His Word. Daily the Holy Spirit 'calls, gathers' and sanctifies' building up the Body of Christ. God's encouragement can happen in all kinds of ways, most of all it comes in that which He gave long ago in His Son Jesus. On the night of His birth, angels announced, Good tidings of great joy for all people. The question is, who might you encourage with the same tidings of joy?

Pastor Kelly Mitteis

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