Silence is a Killer…A Devotional Pondering.

“Therefore encourage one another and build each other up, just as in fact you are doing.” 1 Thessalonians 5:11

Let’s face it, we all encounter difficult days…some more difficult than others.
There are days that we can manage on our own, and then there are days when we are completely floored by the problems that come our way.  The pressures may seem impossible to overcome, and sometimes that may be true…

I know what you’re thinking, “that doesn’t sound very encouraging to me”…let me finish:
The pressures may seem impossible to overcome, and sometimes that may be true…but we were never meant to handle it all on our own.

In the Apostle Paul’s day, the new believers in Thessalonica were encountering all kinds of trouble.  Thessalonica was the largest city in Macedonia which boasted over 200,000 people.  This city was known for being a military and commercial port city.  So within this large city in Macedonia, these young Christians were encountering all sorts of trouble – even persecution and death because of their new-found declarations of faith.  In the midst of their living testimonies, they longed for the day of Christ’s return.  What does that mean?  They lived in fear every single day, and couldn’t wait for Christ to come back.   And so these young Christians lived expectant lives while encouraging each other onward.

The persecution in Thessalonica must have been fierce for the Apostle Paul to remind them that they needed one another and they ought to continue (“just as you are doing”) to encourage one another.

Let’s put this into perspective:
We might not be facing certain death for our faith, instead we might be struggling to pay rent, finding funds to feed our families, enduring a tough problem at work or at home…all of these situations are arduous and, at times they keep us up at night.
The killer is silence. 
What do I mean?
We think no other Christian is struggling, and if they are it must mean that their faith isn’t strong enough.  This could not be further from the truth.
We have this idea that we shouldn’t let other Christians know how discouraged we really are, because we don’t want them to think less of us.  Because we don’t want others to talk.  Because we fear judgment of others.  Because we believe in the perfect Christian life that really doesn’t exist…because we’ve bought the lie that to be a Christian means we don’t struggle with these things anymore.

And so, silence is a killer.
No one knows.
We don’t share.
And our hurts go unchecked, unnoticed, and unaddressed.

Dear Christian,
How can we encourage one another if we aren’t being honest with each other?
How can we carry each other’s burdens if we allow silence to slowly kill our souls?
We cannot continue to buy the lie that everything is fine when we face times of trial and we keep it private.  (Some will laugh at this and say, but church is full of hypocrites and gossipers…then find REAL believers in whom you can confide!)

Healing can begin with out this kind of encouragement, but long is the process and deep the scars.  When we have others who will journey beside us, and encourage us, we will find added strength, hope, abundance and encouragement.

Don’t let silence kill you.

Having the Right Perspective

Perspective matters.  In every aspect of life it matters from which perspective you are peering at any given issue.

Take this sidewalk art for example:


As one walks up to it from a distance the illusion within this drawn perspective makes it look as though the man is truly standing on a globe.  But what happens when you peer at it from the side?  It looks like this:


Now the illusion is revealed for what it is.  This globe has been drawn for the viewer to see it head on and not from an angle such as this, but the mystery and trick is quickly broken.

Life can be like this too.  Problems and troubles come our way, but how they effect us is a matter of perspective.  This isn’t some sort of “self-help” thought, but rather a “heart-help” notion.  How we view our worries, our fears and our hurts matters.  It not only matters to our emotional, physical and spiritual well-being; but it matters to God as well.

King David was a man after God’s own heart who knew a thing or two about worries and problems.  He faced death threats, murder attempts; he saw a woman bathing on a roof and plotted to not only seduce her but the murder her husband too.  Some of his problems were of his own making while others were dependent of the whims of a tyrant and foreign entities.  How David faced these trials became a matter of perspective.

Though David wasn’t perfect, he did know where his help came from.  In Psalm 86 he wrote; “Incline your ear, O Lord, and answer me, for I am poor and needy.  Preserve my life, for I am godly; save your servant, who trusts in you – you are my God.”           So much can be said of these two sentences.  David recognizes how poor and needy he is, and he is in need of saving once again.  He pleads with God to save him, and elicits a powerful reason for his request: “You are my God.”

Problems, fears and worries will be waiting for us in this life like hungry wolves on a hunt, but if we have the right perspective, and declare “You are my God” we too can overcome anything that comes our way!  We may not be delivered from those problems, but we will have One who will journey through it with us…come what may.

What does your perspective look like today?   How is your viewing angle on the problems of life?  Can you boldly declare as David did, I “trust in you – you are my God“?  If you can’t, then perhaps it is time to adjust your vision.  Stand before Him, trust Him, and find that He will always be there for you even in the midst of your worries and fears.

Perhaps it’s time to get some Godly perspective on these earthly troubles.

-Just a thought for today.


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