**Wait on the Lord: be of good courage, and he shall strengthen thine heart: wait, I say, on the Lord. ** Psalm 27:14
We’ve talked about Psalm 27 a few times here at richinmercy.net. It is one of those verses that we could dwell on for a long time because it teaches us so much.
Today, as we continue to look at how to be strengthened, we are reminded again by Psalm 27, that the Lord is the One who strengthens us when we are weary.
But there are a couple of other verses that tell us something more.
** She girdeth her loins with strength, and strengtheneth her arms. ** Proverbs 31:17
** Enlarge the place of thy tent, and let them stretch forth the curtains of thine habitations: spare not, lengthen thy cords, and strengthen thy stakes; ** Isaiah 54:2
Proverbs 31 and Isaiah 54 seem to give another point of view. The virtuous woman strengthens her own arms and legs. The barren woman of Isaiah 54 strengthens her own stakes, the boundaries of her home. The effort is theirs. They are responsible for their own strength.
We know that our strength comes from the Lord but, sometimes, we need to take action. Sitting around moaning about our situation doesn’t change anything, right? So, the Proverbs 31 woman took things into her own hands and made herself stronger. She pushed herself to new limits, like it says in Isaiah 54.
When we are not happy with our own situation, and want to throw in the towel because we are weary or discouraged, maybe we need to try something new. Because inaction will only produce weak spiritual muscles.
So, what are some new things that we could do to make us stronger:
-we could start a new ministry- something that uses the gifts we already have or that help us to develop new ones.
-we could meet new people in hopes of finding someone hungry for the things of God, enabling us to share our story or if they already know the Lord, we can encourage them and strengthen them with our words.
-we could bake cookies (or give a little gift) for someone that has bigger problems than ourselves, which will help us to look outside of ourselves and our own discouragements. It doesn’t have to be a huge thing, my sister writes little thank you notes filled with happy stickers to her clients and gets several very grateful replies that her little notes really helped encourage a young mom or a shut in elderly person. Marianne visits and helps out her elderly neighbors with her husband.
Any of these ideas, and there are many more, would give us some new perspective and clear our minds and heart which might lead us to a solution to our own problems.
MInistering to others will make us stronger, bring us joy and break up the dark cloud that weighs us down and depletes our strength.
Ezekiel rebukes the children of Israel for not doing these things.
** The diseased have ye not strengthened, neither have ye healed that which was sick, neither have ye bound up that which was broken, neither have ye brought again that which was driven away, neither have ye sought that which was lost; …** Ezekiel 34:4
The Bible tells us that the joy of the Lord is our strength. But joy doesn’t come to us by focusing on our troubles.
Our own small efforts of being a blessing can lighten our load and bring joy to others and to ourselves when we do something that strengthens others in their heartache.
** Now he that planteth and he that watereth are one: and every man shall receive his own reward according to his own labour. For we are labourers together with God: ye are God’s husbandry, ye are God’s building. we are co laborers ** 1 Corinthians 3:8,9
We can partner with God in strengthening ourselves and others. But it won’t happen if we don’t take the first steps.
In 1 Samuel 30:6 we are reminded of what David did in the midst of trouble…
** And David was greatly distressed; for the people spake of stoning him, because the soul of all the people was grieved, every man for his sons and for his daughters: but David encouraged himself in the Lord his God. **
We can encourage ourselves. The Lord encourages us. We can encourage others in their tough times.
We can labour, all of us, together, with God. And we might just turn the world upside down.
Share with us, will you? the way you, or someone you know, encourages others in some small way in the comments below. It will strengthen all of us.
2 thoughts on “Stronger Together!”
I was recently out of state visiting my daughter. My church friend texted me to see if I was having a good visit and to let me know that she was praying for me. I was impressed that she remembered I was away and that she initiated “checking in”!
Thank you Carolyn for sharing what a blessing your friend was by checking in that all was going well, but also for letting you know that she is faithfully praying for you! The more I learn about prayer, the more grateful I am for those who pray for others. Having a praying friend is the best gift!!