Use Your Experiences to Encourage Others
“Encourage one another and help one another.” (1 Thessalonians 5:11, GNT)
God wants you to build up, motivate, and inspire other people. The Bible says in 1 Thessalonians 5:11, “Encourage one another and help one another” (GNT).
How do you do that? When you share your experiences and about how God worked in your life, it gives people hope. When you’ve gone through the same situation someone else is facing, you can reassure them that God will get them through it too. You’re able to help them overcome their fears and break down barriers.
When you share your experiences with other people, you help take away their fears. It’s kind of like riding a roller coaster. When you go to an amusement park and stand in line for one of those huge roller coasters for the first time, you’re thinking, “Is this a smart decision?” Then the person in front of you turns around and says, “This is a great ride. I’ve been on it five times.” So then you’re thinking, “Okay, I’m going to live. He’s done it five times. It’s got to be okay.”
Hearing from someone who’s already gone through what you’re facing is an inspiration. It’s motivational.
How many first-time parents feel scared to death, unprepared, and inadequate? All of them! They’re grateful when somebody comes along and says, “Babies cry. It’s okay. This is normal.” Their fears don’t seem so daunting when others share how they came through similar experiences. It gives them hope!
You also help people break through barriers when you motivate them with your own experience. On May 6, 1954, Roger Bannister became the first man to run a sub-four-minute mile. Before he did it, everybody said it was impossible. Yet, the very next month, another man joined him under four minutes. And the following year, three men achieved the same feat during one race. Because people realized it wasn’t impossible, and it gave them hope that they could do it too.
You have experiences in your life that could be barrier-busting, inspirational, and motivational to other people -- but only if you’re willing to share them.
Don’t waste any of your experiences. Use them to encourage others and give them hope!
Talk It Over
What scary thing have you been able to try because someone else shared their experience with you? How did their story give you courage and hope?
What painful or difficult experiences from your past could help others and give them hope?
Do you want God to use your experiences to give other people hope? If you do, take some time to ask him to give you opportunities to share your experiences with the people who need to hear them.
Premium Resource: S.H.A.P.E. Study Kit
This devotional © 2021 by Rick Warren. All rights reserved. Used by permission.
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