the weblog of Alan Knox

Encouragement in simple things…

Posted by on Feb 12, 2007 in edification, gathering | 4 comments

I’ve posted before about how I’ve been encouraged by the church. I’m often encouraged (exhorted, admonished, taught, etc.) in scheduled times of teaching. But, sometimes the most encouraging times can be a simple, unplanned, spontaneous response to how God is working in the life of a brother or sister in Christ.

One of our sisters in Christ (You first met her in a post called “What really matters…“) shared with us during our last Lord’s Supper/Fellowship. She told us that she had a rough week. But, God had continually ministered to her through an old song: Great is Thy Faithfulness. She said she didn’t even know all of the words, but one phrase kept repeating in her head: “All I have needed thy hand hath provided”.

We all agreed that we needed to be reminded of God’s faithfulness, so we sang the first verse and chorus together:

Great is Thy faithfulness, O God my Father;
There is no shadow of turning with Thee;
Thou changest not, Thy compassions, they fail not;
As Thou hast been, Thou forever will be.

Great is Thy faithfulness!
Great is Thy faithfulness!
Morning by morning new mercies I see.
All I have needed Thy hand hath provided;
Great is Thy faithfulness, Lord, unto me!

One of our brothers remarked that that song references Lamentations 3, so we read this passage together:

Through the LORD’s mercies we are not consumed,
Because His compassions fail not.
They are new every morning;
Great is Your faithfulness.
“The LORD is my portion,” says my soul,
“Therefore I hope in Him!” (Lamentations 3:22-24 NKJV)

This was such a special time, and it all began with someone being willing to share about how God used one line of a song to encourage her, and with the church giving her opportunity to share. This led to all of us being reminded that God is faithful, and that He is our portion. And, as the last phrase says, “Therefore, I hope in Him!”

Unplanned… unrehearsed… unchecked… simple… heartfelt… encouragement.

Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom, teaching and admonishing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord. And whatever you do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through Him. (Colossians 3:16-17 NKJV)


4 Comments

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  1. 2-12-2007

    We’ve been out of town for a few days (I finally got to meet Dave Black in person!!), and I am woefully behind on reading, writing, and commenting.

    I missed some really good discussions here. Great posts, Alan, and great discussions in the comments sections.

    I hope to get back into the swing of things soon.

    steve :)

  2. 2-12-2007

    Steve,

    Welcome back! I hope you found Dave Black as engaging and edifying as I do. Please, join in any of the conversations here. A good conversation is not over.

    -Alan

  3. 2-12-2007

    Dave Black was even more warm and genuine in person than I could have imagined. Even though I only got to spend about 10 minutes with him, it was a wonderful 10 minutes. He made me feel like I was a worthy conversation partner, and that blessed me.

    So yes — engaging and edifying for sure! He’s desirous of joining us for lunch after the conference in April. Are you arranging something, or am I? Also, I need suggestions on hotels in the area for that Friday night.

    (I know, I could say all this in a private email, but I’m being lazy right now! hehe)

  4. 2-12-2007

    Steve,

    I’m glad that you asked him to join us. I will be glad to make arrangements for lunch. Email me and let me know how many are coming with you.

    I think I need to post something about this so that others can join us if they would like to.

    -Alan