From the writings of the Rev. Billy Graham
Dear Dr. Graham:
As I age I tend to look on the darker side of issues but in my heart I want to be an encourager so that my faith in God is apparent. Are there books that are particularly good at teaching this wonderful attribute?
Dear E.F.: All around us are people whose lives are filled with trouble and sorrow. They need our compassion and our encouragement. It pleases the Lord when people want to lift others up. The Psalmist wrote about finding encouragement through God’s Word (Psalm 119:28). We can read books about compassion. We can listen to speeches about being encouragers. But nowhere will we find greater instruction that from the Bible. God is the One who teaches us to be more concerned about the needs and feelings of others than our own. We are to encourage our loved ones, friends, and associates, and God will help us do this. “ ‘Not by might nor by power, but by My Spirit,’ says the Lord” (Zechariah 4:6).
One of the attributes of the Holy Spirit is to encourage our hearts so that we can be a blessing to others. Those who follow Christ will learn what it means to minister to others, and this selfless act will show that you belong to Christ and are empowered by Him. Sometimes we encourage others without even being aware of it. No longer will our lives seem ordinary and indistinguishable from the rest of the world. With an old head and a young heart, you can be a real strength to others who need a word of encouragement. Look to Christ and you will find that in doing so you are pointing others to Him as well.