The Spirit of Encouragement (The God of Encouragement)John Kirkland
If you love me, keep my commandments.
I will pray to the Father, and he will give you another Counselor,
that he may be with you forever,—
the Spirit of truth, whom the world can’t receive; for it doesn’t see him, neither knows him. You know him, for he lives with you, and will be in you.
I will not leave you orphans. I will come to you.
Yet a little while, and the world will see me no more; but you will see me. Because I live, you will live also.
In that day you will know that I am in my Father, and you in me, and I in you.
One who has my commandments, and keeps them, that person is one who loves me. One who loves me will be loved by my Father, and I will love him, and will reveal myself to him.”
Judas (not Iscariot) said to him, “Lord, what has happened that you are about to reveal yourself to us, and not to the world?”
Jesus answered him,
“If a man loves me, he will keep my word. My Father will love him, and we will come to him, and make our home with him.
He who doesn’t love me doesn’t keep my words. The word which you hear isn’t mine, but the Father’s who sent me.
I have said these things to you, while still living with you.
But the Counselor, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, he will teach you all things, and will remind you of all that I said to you.
Peace I leave with you. My peace I give to you; not as the world gives, give I to you. Don’t let your heart be troubled, neither let it be fearful.
You heard how I told you, ‘I go away, and I come to you.’ If you loved me, you would have rejoiced, because I said ‘I am going to my Father;’ for the Father is greater than I.
Now I have told you before it happens so that, when it happens, you may believe.
I will no more speak much with you, for the prince of the world comes, and he has nothing in me.
But that the world may know that I love the Father, and as the Father commanded me, even so I do. Arise, let us go from here. John 14:15-31 (World English Bible)
The God of Encouragement
Encouragement can make a tremendous difference to every one of us. We all have times when life seems to get on top of us and the challenges ahead seem more than we can cope with. Even the most optimistic people have times of discouragement.
Many of us have been blessed with friends who stood by us in the hardest times and helped us to get going and to keep on going.
Some of us have had the privilege of helping others through hard times. Many of us have been blessed by people who recognised our potential, helped us to glimpse that potential, and then encouraged us to press on to achieve it.
Some of us have had the privilege of encouraging others to develop more of their potential. The greatest encouragement is much more than a comfort which makes us feel good for a time. It is more the original sense of the English word “comfort” from the Latin con fortis meaning “with strength”.
The presence of an encouraging friend can give strength while they are with us. The greatest encouragement comes from the God of encouragement who has promised his people that he will always be with us.
This short series of studies follows the sermon series and explores the theme of encouragement. Pray that the Lord will use this to:
- Encourage you in your walk with the Lord
- Encourage other members of your homegroup
- Make you someone who encourages others
- Build a culture of encouragement in our church
- Develop partnerships of encouragement