How can we build an encouraging community in a world that is full of pain, hurt, and negativity? Here are three key ways, inspired by 1 Thessalonians 5:11-24:
1. Turn toward the “others.” (1 Thessalonians 5:14-15)
An encouraging community means that we don’t turn away, but rather toward others. That can be hard because “others” are probably people we don’t share life with. We don’t know them. But in order to build a community that is encouraging, we can’t stay in our safe corner of the world. When we turn toward those that we don’t know, the love of God is shown, walls are broken down, and community is created.
2. Turn toward God. (1 Thessalonians 5:17-18)
An encouraging community turns toward God. For us to be a force of love and encouragement in the world, we have to constantly draw that same kind of love and encouragement from God. If we turn to Him regularly in prayer, we can become a group of people who are deeply rooted in His encouraging love. We’ll have no other option than to go and share that love with our friends and others.
3. Turn toward the Holy Spirit. (1 Thessalonians 5:19-22)
An encouraging community turns toward the Holy Spirit. Have you ever felt a nudge? Or maybe a call that was more than just a voice in your head? To truly be connected to where God is leading us and become an encouraging community, we have to embrace, listen, and turn to the Holy Spirit.
To hear more about building and embracing an encouraging community, listen to the final message in our Community series, here.