“Encouragement is in the DNA of all people, both in our ability to encourage and our personal need for it.” ~ Max Lucado
I love coffee because it is hot.
To fully enjoy a cup of java, it needs to be coaxed. It requires time to sip and even more leisure when taken with a bit of conversation, in between bites of sweet pastry. The way to a woman’s heart is through this combination of dark and chewy bliss.
During the weekday, it’s another story. It’s all about caffeination. It gets so busy multi-tasking, getting things done, I often pick up a cold cup of joe and throw it in the microwave a few seconds.
Not on the weekends. No, I drink it the way I read a good book.
I was after a piece of this heaven last weekend with Hubby, when we set out on an excursion in the city. It was our 7th wedding anniversary. To celebrate the occasion, we each picked out one thing we haven’t had the chance to do yet.
Easy To Forget
Mine was easy. I wanted to sit down with a cup of French roast at a delicious bakery down at the Mission District in San Francisco named Tartine – with a fresh baked, super buttery, giant croissant.
As we made our way towards the red target on our GPS map, we sighted a queue snaking out of the black storefront with open windows.
“Is that a line?” Hubby’s eyes squinted in disbelief as we drove past.
I prayed silently for a parking space to miraculous open up. We had another fun activity lined up later which meant our SUV needed to pull into somewhere else in a little over an hour.
As we inched along the meters, hunting for a spot, I anxiously acquiesced. “Maybe we’ll just get our coffee and pastries to-go…”
Visions of sunning myself along a street side cafe flew out the car window.
It’s easy to forget how simply encouragement can come.
We turned a corner. More than a couple spots stood empty.
I yelped with joy, literally running through the streets to wait my turn. Standing there, inhaling the scents of blackberry tartes and bubbling quiches coming out of the oven, I noticed the sea of people outmatched the tables and chairs set up along the sidewalk.
It’s easy to forget how simply encouragement can come — when I zero in on the now.
It Is A Choice
It’s just like me in everyday life. I go too long holding staring contests with my worries and my discouragement becomes as impenetrable as kryptonite.
Even with friends in our lives, we first sit at a table for two when we confront our problems and even our dreams. It’s just us and our circumstances.
It is a choice then, to decide when — and who — we are willing to make a space for.
Even God waits for our invitation. He stands there, very near, but will not force His way in.
God has a variety of ways to get us to open our hearts to Him. All of which, come by way of encouragement.
Maybe you haven’t turned the corner yet. Most likely that space you’re looking to get freed up in your circumstances is still missing.
Hold on. God wants to comfort and strengthen you while you are still searching.
Is it a word He is holding out to you?
Or a friend who He’s placed by your side?
In my case, it was a table that opened up, as I walked by with my pastries in a to-go box in one hand and coffee in a paper cup in the other.
We sat down with so much time to spare, I laughed in between every morsel. I fell in love all over again with the God who sent me Hubby, who shook his head at my funny stories as we savored our croissant. Bite by bite.
“We urge you…
encourage the fainthearted,
help the weak,
be patient with everyone.”
~ 1 Thess.5:14
A I read this verse, I felt God was curiously asking me to extend encouragement, help and patience to not only others… but to myself.
As we recognize our own need for encouragement, we move ourselves in a position to receive. It is in this humble posture, our hearts become sensitized to ways we can encourage others.
What are your thoughts on today’s post? Share a comment.
It was the National Day Of Encouragement earlier this week, on Sunday, September 12th. I’m celebrating by writing a series of posts this month in dedication to the ways God encourages us.
Remember to join me
in the quest to –
*Keep Faith Fresh*
THIS THURSDAY 9/16/10
I’m kicking off the series today — along with you this Thursday at the Faith Barista Jam! Click Here to see how you can participate!