Words of Encouragement

Concerned man looking out the window

A word of encouragement heals the one who receives it.—PROVERBS 15:4 (VOICE)

Several years ago my husband suddenly developed a persistent pain condition. The constant pain has left him with limited ability to do most of the things that help make life fulfilling. He could no longer spend much time with friends or family, or leave the house for more than a couple of hours. He couldn’t do anything that required his focused attention for more than a few minutes at a time. Needless to say, our lives are now very different than what we had anticipated they would be.

I have always been someone who encourages people to live life fully and not to be content with sitting on the sidelines. However, I began to hear myself telling my husband to limit his actions, to try and avoid anything that would increase his pain. “Don’t.” “You can’t.” ”Wait, that’s too heavy for you to carry.” “Here, let me take that downstairs.” One afternoon he finally told me just how discouraging it is to hear those words, whether they’re coming from me or anyone else. He said he’d much rather try something and test his limits than let fear keep him from trying at all.

Today's Prayer:

Lord, thank you for your words of encouragement to me when I am fearful or worried. 

Adapted from Strength & Grace: Daily Devotions for Caregivers, a new publication from Guideposts