This week Scott and I talked about the gift of encouragement on our podcast. Honestly, I never thought about how powerful encouraging words are. My friend Patti is the best encourager ever. Many times I would call Patti and ask if she could go for a walk. We would then meet up and we would talk about life. I would share my struggles, Patti would listen, and then she would encourage me. At times I would share some real family struggles, and not once would Patti condemn me or think less of me. When our walk was finished I would return home feeling lighter and more refreshed – ready to tackle the challenges ahead with a new perspective.
Everyone needs a Patti in their life. We too often keep our frustrations bottled up inside. We don’t share our struggles because we are afraid of what others may think, or possibly we think they don’t want to hear our stuff because they have too much stuff of their own to deal with. The truth is God blesses us with friendships so that we can share our hurts. Because God tells us in Proverbs 12:25, “Anxiety weighs down the heart, but a kind word cheers it up.” Test it out and see if it works – I guarantee that it does!