They say character is revealed when pressure is applied.
This week served up a huge share of pressure as Florida braced for one of the largest storms ever recorded in the Atlantic. Every bit of Florida felt the panic over limited water, gasoline and batteries as we guessed where and when this storm would land.
Long lines, short supplies and days of prepping can frazzle even the best of nerves.
One video showed a Black Friday-like frenzy when a single pallet of water was delivered to a warehouse. It was gone in seconds as people grabbed as much and as quickly as they could.
But amid the rush to fill tanks and stockpile staples, kinder moments like this one surfaced.
When Pam Brekke heard a new shipment of generators had just been delivered to her local warehouse store, she rushed out to get one. Her elderly father needed power to keep his oxygen machine working. Others had also rushed to buy the generators and the very last one was taken by the person in front of her. When she broke down in tears, the stranger with that generator approached her.
She relayed that she was worried for her father and added, “That’s all right, God will provide.” The stranger, moved by her need, gave her his generator, telling her she needed it more than he did.
God did provide. Through the hands of another.
I’ve seen that over and over this week.
A family of four who helped my widowed neighbor this morning clean yard debris from the storm. Families with power offering hot showers and fresh meals to families still without power. People opening homes for evacuees, texting friends and neighbors to see if anything was needed, even trading chicken for candy before the storm hit in full force.
God provides. Through the hands of others.
How fitting that as I write this, today is the National Day of Encouragement.
Truth is we don’t need a proclamation to become encouragers. As believers, we’re called to encourage one another daily.
So this week, I’m joining an #EncouragementDare. A choice to purposefully look for ways to encourage others.
It doesn’t have to be a huge endeavor. The beautiful thing about encouragement is that God can use our little seeds of encouragement at just the right time to powerfully lift someone’s spirits.
Think back over encouragement you’ve received. Often, small acts of kindness are the most welcomed.
- A Bible verse texted just when you needed it.
- A handwritten note that brightened up your day.
- Warm smiles and an extra tip left for a hardworking server.
- A listening ear just when you needed to be heard.
- A thank you for that work you thought was unnoticed.
There are so many ways we can look to encourage someone else.
And here’s a secret: encouragement is contagious.
“… whoever refreshes others will be refreshed.” Proverbs 11:25
It flows two ways. Bringing a smile to someone else warms our own heart.
Isn’t that God’s signature? As we use our hands and our words to pour encouragement out to others, God is filling us right back up.
*If you’d like to join me on an #EncouragementDare this week, you can sign up here for free printables, ecards and resources from Dayspring.
*This post contains affiliate links.
Melissa Plets says
Link to printables for encouragement dare is broken – oops! 😊
Lisa Appelo says
Updated the link! Thank you, Melissa. 🙂
God does provide sometimes through the hands of others. Thank you for pointing out the kindness and generosity of people even in a dark event like Hurricane Irma.
Allison Wilson Lee says
Beautiful words, Lisa. It is a blessing to give encouragement to others–and to realize that our own words & actions have power to impact another person is very uplifting.
What a timely message, Lisa. Even though I’m just now reading this post (a little late), it’s never too late for a little encouragement! Thank you for the reminder that encouragement is contagious. Blessings! <3