If You Want to Live as an Encourager

Part 3

20.  An encourager may encourage another in important ways and yet be completely unaware of the significance of his/her actions.   In other words, our capacity to encourage may be much larger than our awareness of what is actually happening in the relationship.

21.  An encourager has learned that paying attention to another’s successes and failures is critical.  These are special moments for people.  Both can offer significant opportunities for others to encourage.

22.  An encourager communicates value that may be long remembered by the hearer.   In some cases, these words are the only positive, encouraging communication that person may have received in a long time.

23.  An encourager understands that many people grow up hearing disparaging, insulting, vile remarks directed toward them.  Meanwhile, an encourager’s words may feel like a drink from a fresh, cool mountain stream.

24.  An encourager pays attention to the details of another’s life.  The encourager notices what another person is doing that might be noble, good, or worthy of imitation. She takes nothing for granted.  Rather she might express her appreciation to a person who has worked hard to do a task right.  For instance, someone may have gone to a great deal of trouble to prepare a meal or to purchase a gift.  An encourager will express gratitude to that person for what they have done.

25.  An encourager understands that one size does not fit all.  What encourages one may not encourage another.

26.  An encourager is sensitive to other people and does not wish to discourage or demoralize another.

27.  An encourager is very careful with humor.  Many people have been embarrassed by someone who said something that was insensitive and even humiliating.   When a person cringes upon hearing such a thoughtless remark, the person who uttered the remark becomes defensive and says, “I was only joking.”  (Often this means, “Don’t hold me responsible for what just came out of my mouth.”)  Meanwhile, an encourager uses humor that is self-deprecating or is in some way safe.

28. An encourager steps in when someone is discouraged.  Perhaps a high school student has run for student government president and wasn’t elected.  Perhaps another person interviewed for a new job and wasn’t chosen.  These can be very discouraging moments.  An encourager is sensitive to these moments and seeks to encourage.

29.  An encourager remembers the forgotten people.  Is someone in the hospital?  Is someone in a nursing home?  Is there someone who rarely gets included at social gatherings?  An encourager encourages the forgotten. 

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