How To Encourage
After spending the past week on mission trip sites I have come to the conclusion that students and adults don’t know how to encourage another person. On LeaderTreks trips we use a tool called encouragement beads to do intentional encouragement. This tool is designed to teach students the habit of telling someone how they see God working in their life.
Often we think encouragement is telling someone how much we like them. While it’s alway important to share with people warm feelings we have for them, telling them that we like them is not real encouragement. Another misconception of encouragement is telling a story of shared experience. While knowing someone a long-time leads to friendship it’s not encouragement.
Encouragement is being able to tell someone God is at work in your life and I can see it. It’s God centered. It’s about him and his work. It’s not about us and our work. People who are self-centered often have trouble with encouragement. Humble folks who have an eye to seeing what is going on behind the scenes are often great at encouragement.
Think now about an important person in your life. What could you say to encourage them? Try starting with this sentence: I see God working in your life by _____________ (just fill in the blank).
About the Author
Doug Franklin is the president of LeaderTreks, an innovative leadership development organization focusing on students and youth workers. Doug and his wife, Angie, live in West Chicago, Illinois. They don’t have any kids, but they have 2 dogs that think they are children. Diesel and Penelope are Weimaraners who never leave their side. Doug grew up in… Read More