I’ve been looking at verses of Scripture on helping other people.
The following verses have stood out.
Do not neglect to do good and to share what you have, for such sacrifices are pleasing to God. Hebrews 13:16
Learned: It’s possible to “discount” the good in my marriage. There’s always something good…but I have to be intentional about finding it and be willing to share it.
But if anyone has the world’s goods and sees his brother in need, yet closes his heart against him, how does God’s love abide in him? 1 John 3:17
Learned: Refusing to share what I have (for whatever reason) is to lack in love.
Let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven. Matthew 5:16
Learned: Helping others is not for my glory, but God’s. I must get me (my pride, my ego, my sense of inadequacy) out of my mind
Let each of you look not only to his own interests, but also to the interests of others. Philippians 2:4
Learned: Life is not all about me.
And so train the young women to love their husbands and children, to be self-controlled, pure, working at home, kind, and submissive to their own husbands, that the word of God may not be reviled. Titus 2:4-5
Learned: Christ commands the older (in experience or age a.t.c) women to teach younger women.
I am always excited about finding teachings on growth and leadership and encouraging others because I am passionate about raising leaders and influencers.
In fact that’s the heart behind this blog – to help wives grow, not just for their own benefit, but for the benefit of other wives who need what they have learned.
I was in leadership for many years, both in church and at work … until the Lord changed my position and location.
In those years in leadership, I came across many aspiring mentors and leaders who would disqualify themselves. They said say to me, (or a variant)
“I wish I was qualified enough to lead, maybe I would consider it”
“I am not the leader type”
“People are too messy”
“I don’t have the time” e.t.c
When I started mentoring women in courtship and marriage, it came up again; that we don’t feel qualified enough to help other women in our circles of influence because
– we don’t feel “called” to marriage ministry
– we feel we don’t have the personality
– our own marriage is struggling.
If you’ve thought like that, let me help you out today!
1. You don’t need a special calling or ministry to help someone in need or put encouragement in someone’s heart.
Imagine with me.
One evening, you are walking home, minding your own business when a lady in front of you stumbles and falls.
What would you do?
I want to imagine you’d do something.
At that moment you don’t need a special anointing to help her back to her feet or to rush and cushion her from the fall.
You don’t need a special grace to collect the contents of her purse strewn all over the ground or help her clean up her dusty skirt.
That’s relationship and marriage “ministry” for you; people are stumbling and falling all around us and they need somebody.
Sure God will call certain people to certain ministry positions or full time service.
But they are not the only people called to help and serve.
If that were the case, the love of Jesus would not be felt or seen or heard in our communities.
You are Jesus with skin on to your friends, your family, your colleagues, your fellow students.
2. You’ll never be qualified enough (you might as well quit hoping and waiting)
We will never be qualified and perfect enough to help other people.
In fact “feeling qualified” will drive you straight to obsoletion.
Unless you feel someone’s pain, keep walking in their shoes, are touched with the same trouble, have cried the same tears, felt the same wings of fear and gloom sweep over your own marriage, you can’t truly help somebody else.
The thing that qualifies you is not eloquence or degrees or having a perfect marriage or all your ducks in a row.
It’s having an open heart that Jesus can flow through.
A heart that breaks at His feet, allows itself to be molded and changed so it can be sent forth.
Jesus doesn’t have perfect people to use. (Took a looong time for me to understand that) He has you and me..and that’s His plan!
I tell people that if Jesus can use me to encourage other people, He can use anybody.
I don’t have “class” or “clout”. I come from a small nondescript “village” in the heart of Kenya. I grew up herding goats and climbing trees and being rebellious.
We all have a story. If God were looking at our CVs, none of us would qualify to be in His presence, let alone serve Him.
People who’ll say
“Here I am Lord, I don’t even know how to make my own marriage work. But You have promised to teach me. Teach me, lead me, show me how to love my husband and thrive, show me how to be a light of the world, a city on a hill that cannot be hidden( Mathew 5:14)
Just give your story to God – your fears and inadequacies and struggles – and watch Him turn it for good.
3. Practice does make better
We like to admire the success of others. I know I do!
But I’ve been around a few years and I’ve been learning that everyone has to start from somewhere.
The success I see today is a result of consistent application of faith and action.
Unless you open your mouth and say something good when your office mates start to bash marriage, chances are you won’t get other opportunities to influence.
And you’ll allow those negative tracks to form in your mind such that you’ll be even less willing to speak up next time.
It has to start somewhere.
Don’t even be intimidated by others who seem to have big “ministries” or big opportunities, thinking “I could never do that”.
God has not called you to do that!
He’s called you to do you.
To be faithful where you are.
To encourage the sad wife who thinks her marriage will fail, to lift up the broken-hearted single girl who thinks men are horrible.
To speak up when the wounded woman in the office spreads negativity like wildfire, to love your husband well so you can be an example to other couples who are looking up to you.
You don’t have to do everything and God may never call you to minister to masses of married women or girls.
But He has called you to your friends and colleagues and neighbors.
Don’t go looking for “ministry opportunities” out there; the need is right there where you are.
Here’s where it gets interesting;
Helping others helps you.
God knows what He’s doing, folks!
Pastor David Anderson says: “What you put in the hand of Jesus is never lost”
3 ways helping other marriages helps you own marriage
1. You receive more than you give.
You can’t out give God. The Bible says that we love because He first loved us. And that God is no man’s debtor.
Whatever you put to the ground, you will reap some kind of harvest.
Not always in the form or context you expect, of course. But there’ll be a harvest.
Might be your husband learning something from another husband when you get together for coffee with another couple.
Might be that text from the sad wife, lifting your spirits as she explains how your words made a difference in her time of need.
When you hang out with other couples, talking, laughing, crying, doing life together, giving of yourself, you are more blessed, richer, deeper, better for it.
2. Helping others cements what you already know
There’s nothing like hearing yourself repeat your own lessons to someone else.
When you “preach” something to someone, chances are they will be looking to see if you are living it!
Talk about outside-motivation!
Helping others wives will help you remember your own lessons.
And keep you motivated to live what God has revealed to you.
3. It’s comforting and encouraging.
One of the wonderful things about helping and encouraging others is realizing you are not alone.
Sometimes we think we have a raw deal, that no one could possibly have it worse than us.
But really, what we need is to crawl out of our cocoon and enter other peoples worlds.
There’s always someone who has it worse than yon. And someone who is has it good; her marriage is in a good season.
Thing is, you won’t know that if you cage yourself. You’ll always think you are alone.
The bottom line
God has not called a few people to stand up for marriage. He’s called everyone of us.
You are His ambassador and He wants you to do your job, be effective, wherever He’s assigned you.
I love hearing from wives who are making a difference in their little circles of influence. I love hearing how they are impacting other ladies, being a light, fighting for their marriages.
Girlfriends, the devil is trying to make a huge mess of marriages.
He won’t win because greater is He that’s in us that he that’s in the world.
But God needs us to rise up and do our jobs; be our sisters keepers, be a light to our world.
Question: What do you think, have you had opportunities to encourage other wives? Has anyone encouraged you in your time of need and how did that impact you?