grace & eloquence: encouraging

Yesterday we learned a bit about how influential our words are. With our words we can make or break a person, we choose to uplift or belittle, to let the good shine or point out someone's flaws.

With our words we can encourage and what a gift that is! To find a friend who speaks truth into your life, who focuses on the beauty of your soul and who willingly gives compliments is a gift indeed. Rare is she who can focus off herself enough to focus on the beauty, kindness or loveliness of another.

Sometimes, though, us ladies get insecure. We see someone who looks better than us, is more funny than us, has more friends than us and we want to bottle up all the good things we think about this person and bury them. Like a hidden treasure we put them deep in the ground and do not want to reveal the life it can bring to another.

How selfish an attitude this is! How ruthless a spirit exposed! 

Being a woman in today's time is difficult. The media gives us a list of everything we are not but should be. Fathers leave us broken. Mothers tear us down. "Friends" are superficial, only wanting to see themselves succeed or become more popular.

With all of this darkness, light can be hard to find. With all of this battling against us we often need someone to take up arms with us and fight the good fight to holiness, joy, peace and security. And with our words we hold such a power! 

Did you get that? With the words we say we can begin the fight against the lies. We can take up arms against the devil who plans to steal our confidence, kill our joy and destroy our genuine friendships.

I was once challenged that whenever I saw someone and admired or liked something about them I had to let them know. That girl who has the hot boyfriend and you don't walks in with a gorgeous shirt? Let her know you like it. That woman walks in with clear skin and perfect legs and a whole bunch of compassion? Tell her you admire that compassion that indwells within her. Your mom who has belittled you to the bones, withholding compliments herself, is having a great hair day. Tell her with a smile on your face.

1 Peter 2:1 says to "get rid of all evil behavior. Be done with all deceit, hypocrisy, jealousy, and all unkind speech." All unkind speech. 

Words can change the world, my friends.

How does it feel when you are given a compliment? Does it make your day? It does for me. But let's turn the tables: do you encourage often? Does insecurity or bitterness ever hold you back from complimenting someone? How can you today encourage someone? How can you for a lifetime?

image: source