1 Thessalonians 5:14 “And we urge you, beloved, to admonish the idlers, encourage the faint-hearted, help the weak, be patient with all of them.”
The children’s song “Jesus loves me” ran through my mind as I was contemplating this verse. The phrase “they are weak but he is strong” makes me stop and think. Who is weak? When I sing this song to my kids I have changed that to say we are weak but he is strong. In my life journey I have come to see that we are all weak. In our humanness, we are imperfect, faltering and weak. We are easily led astray and become idle, we give up without a fight. It is only through the life of Christ and the guidance of the Holy Spirit that we can receive strong hearts. As we grow in our walk with God, he calls us out of idleness into action. He builds our strength and trust in him so we can encourage others. A story was shared with me recently and I pass it along to you, in part. An agnostic person came to church one morning. She looked different than the conservative Christians expect people to look, with piercings and tattoos and such. When she sat in the pew, the people close by crossed their legs the other way and turned their torsos to face a little bit away from her. She told her friend she will never set foot in a church again because this is how Christians are and she wants no part of it. Take courage from this story; be patient with each other and if you are able, encourage the faint-hearted, admonish the idlers and help the weak.
Help me to love as you love. Guide me to action and give me strength to persevere. Open my eyes to see the struggles of others and let me be an encouragement, not a deterrent. Help us embrace all who need your love. Amen.