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The Gift of Encouragement

I determined to watch for opportunities to share a word of encouragement when I can, especially with young mothers.

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Being a mother is a very difficult job!

It calls for many hours of thankless labor, often during the middle of the night when it feels like no one sees or cares. There is the work of training and disciplining in addition to countless diapers to change and meals to make. Sometimes words of encouragement are hard to come by.

I’ve been at this business of mothering for a long time so I’m beginning to reap the rewards of my years of labor, but there are many mothers who are in the beginning years. They are home with several preschool children and it often looks like an overwhelming task they are facing.

For years I mentored several young mothers.

One of them is home with her 4 and 1 year old sons. Her husband is in school and gone or studying for long hours, they are on a limited income, and live in a small apartment in student housing. She has done an outstanding job of being a wife and mother. Her home is always neat and orderly, she is a great cook, and her children are well cared for and obedient.

A few weeks ago she was very discouraged and read me a list of areas in which she felt she was failing. It was a list most mothers could have written but I was surprised to hear her say these things since I felt she was doing so well. After listening to her I offered some words of encouragement and finally said, “I brag about you!” Her response was, “Really?”

I went on to tell her how I’m always telling others how well she is doing. I’ve even said I wish I had done as well during my husband’s school years. This was just what she needed to hear. Why had I waited so long to tell her? Why did I tell others yet fail to tell her?

I was convicted that I often keep encouraging words to myself instead of sharing them with the people who need to hear them. I was reminded of Proverbs 25:11

[Tweet ““A word fitly spoken is like apples of gold in pictures of silver.” Proverbs 25:11 “]

I determined to watch for opportunities to share a word of encouragement when I can, especially with young mothers. These opportunities present themselves often. How about the young mother at the store? Could you hold the door for her so she can enter more easily, and while you’re doing that, how about a word of encouragement?

This article is now available in Spanish!

Finding Joy in the Journey,


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Phyllis Sather
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  • Jessica
    Posted May 5, 2014 at 9:23 AM

    Words of encouragement carry such weight in our lives. I plan to find some moms to encourage this week. Loved this post!

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