Sunday, 09 November 1997 00:00

The Importance of Encouragement: Comforting Broken Hearts

Ephesians 6:21-24 (KJV)

But that ye also may know my affairs, and how I do, Tychicus, a beloved brother and faithful minister in the Lord, shall make known to you all things: Whom I have sent unto you for the same purpose, that ye might know our affairs, and that he might comfort your hearts. Peace be to the brethren, and love with faith, from God the Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. Grace be with all them that love our Lord Jesus Christ in sincerity. Amen.

What vision do I have for Emmanuel Enid? Besides the obvious, which includes a Bible-teaching center and God-honoring worship, I desire Emmanuel to be a place of encouragement. "Encouraging Emmanuel" would make a good slogan for us! Why?

  1. When You Are in Relationship with Others, Pain is Unavoidable.
    "I have sent him to you for this purpose, that you may know about us." (v.22)
    1. Full knowledge of another person is often painful.
      There are two kinds of pain that you may feel for a loved one.
      1. A pain that arises out of concern for the one you love.
      2. A pain that arises out of disappointment in the one you love.
    2. The reason people hide themselves is to avoid the pain of disappointment.
      Intimacy: "into me you see." Marriages, friendships, churches and other venues of relationship have little intimacy for fear of disappointment. Statements with anger like "How could you?", "I can't believe it!", "Don't you know any better?" and "Don't talk to me!" all convey messages of disappointment.
    3. God has called us to be concerned for, not disappointed in, the ones we love.
      Paul did not hide his situation... in prison, sentenced to die, a traitor, an idolater. You might say, "But Paul didn't bring this upon himself." Paul made a choice that placed him in prison, to die as a traitor. You like his choice, but you don't like the choices of the one you love. Remember, they are still choices.
    4. When There Is Pain in Relationship, Comfort Is Needed.
      "I have sent Tychicus... that you may know... and to comfort your hearts." (v.22)
      1. Comfort involves coming alongside and strengthening. Once Tychicus made known the situation as it was in truth and reality, he came alongside the Ephesians and strengthened them through encouragement. "It's all right to feel what you are feeling" and "I know you are hurting" are statements that convey comfort, encouragement and understanding.
      2. Comfort also involves some tangible gifts of the Spirit.
        • Peace—the ability to dwell with one another in harmonious relationships.
        • Love—an acceptance of a person which arises from the heart of the one loving rather than through the performance of the one being loved.
        • Faith—the ability to rest in God and His wonderful promises.
        • Grace—Goodness released to the undeserving.
      3. Comfort is the balm God uses to heal the hurts in others.
        In other words, when you, by God's grace, are able to be at peace with who your loved one is, bestowing love without conditions, resting in the wonderful promises of God for your life, and showering goodness on your loved one without regard to merit—you are used by God to bring healing through encouragement.

    May God, by His grace, make us all encouragers of the brokenhearted.

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