1 Thessalonians 5:12-24 (NIV)

12 Now we ask you, brothers, to respect those who work hard1 among you, who are over you in the Lord 2 and who admonish you.

13 Hold them in the highest regard in love because of their work. Live in peace with each other.3 
14 And we urge you, brothers, warn those who are idle,4 encourage the timid, help the weak,5 be patient with everyone. 
15 Make sure that nobody pays back wrong for wrong,6 but always try to be kind to each other7 and to everyone else. 
16 Be joyful always;8 
17 pray continually;9 
18 give thanks in all circumstances,10 for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus. 
19 Do not put out the Spirit’s fire;11 
20 do not treat prophecies12 with contempt. 
21 Test everything.13 Hold on to the good.14 
22 Avoid every kind of evil.
23 May God himself, the God of peace,15 sanctify you through and through. May your whole spirit, soul16 and body be kept blameless17 at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ.18
24 The one who calls19 you is faithful20 and he will do it.21

1 Thessalonians 5:14 (NIV)

14 And we urge you, beloved, a to admonish the idlers, encourage the fainthearted, help the weak, be patient with all of them.                            

DEVOTION – Gabriel Brennan (KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa)

Living as a missionary, I get to meet some great people.  Kathy once had to drive me almost an hour to get to an office so that we could sort out an issue with my visa.  When we finally got there, they told us they would not be able to help us;  we would need to come back later.  I felt like a fool for wasting Kathy’s time and gasoline.  But you know what she said to me?  “You want a milkshake?”

Sometimes it’s the small things that surprise me most.  In that moment. Kathy’s offer certainly surprised me.  So she bought us a milkshakes and took that opportunity to tell me about how she started mission work.  It was hearing a modern story from the Boo of Acts.  Her husband died and she left alone, so she sold her house to join a missionary team.  She gave up everything she had to help people in need.  She acted in faith and is now for me a living picture of Christlikeness.  At 65 she still exhibits joy and encouragement – and it’s all because of Christ.

THOUGHT FOR THE DAY: Today I will encourage someone in their faith.

PRAYER: Dear Lord, yo have encouraged us in many ways.  Help us to be encouraging to others.  Amen.