My name is Mrs. Pastor and I’m an addict. One encouraging word is never enough. I'm always hungry for more.
I read that someone did an experiment about the effect of encouragement on someone in a difficult situation. People were asked to stand barefoot in a bucket of ice water. Some people did this alone, and some people had an encourager standing next to them and cheering them on. The people with encouragers were able to stay in the ice water much longer than people who did it on their own.
I have a lot of nice friends and family. They say nice things to me. I know that they like me and think I do good and worthwhile things. Generally speaking, I like myself and say kind things to myself. No one would admire me for a disciplined devotional life, but I believe what God tells me about my worth in Christ.
For the first 3+ decades of my existence, this community of encouragement has been sufficient for me. I assume that these people will love and support me, and I know who to call if I need a boost.
But now that I’m in ice water and frostbite is setting in, I’ve become addicted. I’m kind of shy about asking for special attention from anyone. Desperate times have forced me to learn how to ask for pastoral care, ask friends to spend time with me for the express purpose of listening to my wounded heart, and to ask my depleted husband to find a little energy to listen to and care for me.
So far, everyone I ask has seemed glad to help me. Every time I feel overcome with gratitude and humility. Who am I to receive their attention and sympathy?
And now, I’m shedding all dignity online and begging people to help. Each of you is a miracle of support for me. The messages of understanding, encouragement, and appreciation for this writing give me a lift and sense of purpose and hope that nothing else could provide. Thank you. God bless you.