at encouragement can be

I try, God , to digest what

others have asked

me this-my opinion

of his music and a dear

friend’s want for advice. 

In both instances, I’m stunned

into silence, what can I give? Can I be that 

honest? Really, my opinion? The joy of 

both asking marvels me-both are 

following their dreams & for a second, 

I’m brought to see wh

fmf: try.

This week has been seriously interesting. From Sunday meeting a new friend, Kelly, I met through Instagram. And the awkwardness of it that God melted away through sharing of stories and Wonder Woman. I still can’t hold back wanting to laugh remembering how the woman taking tickets asked if it was one child and one adult. I kind of just stared a minute before Kelly goes, no we’re both adults here. 😂 I don’t know if the woman was referring to me, but Kelly is a little taller than me. I wanted to be a little mad, but I find it too funny. In a way, it’s a reminder to me that I’m God’s child. 

And how can God’s child give adequate advice? On Wednesday my brother’s friend, Ruben had so much joy in telling me he released his first music video. His excitement had my attention right away. Maybe because I haven’t seen someone in a long time so excited come up to me and ask for my opinion. The whole time I’m a mess of nerves because I don’t want to say the wrong thing or crush his dreams. But he did ask for my honesty. And the first thing that comes out of my mouth is, it’s good. Because I’m afraid and don’t know how to give positive feedback while also being honest. Later on, I tell him how I love the scene with him and his mom at the table. How it’s different than a normal music video. I don’t know how to describe other than it feels like I’m watching someone’s home video. 

I don’t love all the swearing, I tell him, and once again am shocked by the fact that though my our views are different, it is okay. I guess I’m coming to see in very small ways we are all struggling, trying to reach for dreams that have placed inside us. One very small step at a time. We need life spoken into us. That is what keeps us going. Not condemnation. Which I think is where a lot of my fear  comes lately. That being honest, saying what I do and don’t like, deserves condemnation. And I think when faced with telling someone what I honestly think of their work or something else, I hesitate  because I never want to come off as rude. Ever. And I myself shrink back a little when someone says you could do more or says it’s good. Never want it to go to my head either. 

I don’t know where I’m going with this except I don’t see what an honor it is to speak into another’s life and how to receive life-giving words without being so skeptical and ask, really? or be too stunned to speak at all.

And oh Jesus, help me. Help me receive and meditate on the life giving words instead of the doubt and not question the encouragement I try to give to others. It comes from you not me. I really do like watching someone smile and be given hope while I wait here in this valley. I don’t think I’d even have the opportunity to share if I was rushing around. Not that I can but you know in my head, it’s a really good time. Being still I learn how you are patient and kind. Wanting me to give yes, but also wanting me to not brush away the good things. Please help me. Amen. 

It will forever amaze me the moments God uses to show me more of who he is and how he may have to sing this over me forever. I want to cry every single time. 

No condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus. Must remember this. 


10 thoughts on “at encouragement can be

  1. hi princess:) i love this post. i love how you talk about the tension between being honest and not being condemning in our assessments. i’m your next door neighbor at FMF today:) blessings martha brady from

  2. I think I have come to realize that if I’m worried about being too harsh or critical, that it helps me not be as critical. And most of my friends with different belief systems actually appreciate my honesty, because they know I’m trying to be gentle. (If that makes sense.)

    What I’m trying to say, and failing at, is don’t be too hard on yourself. I bet you’re doing better than you realize.

    (Your neighbor at FMF this week)

    • Melinda, I’ve had my grandma before she passed away and a friend tell me not to be so hard on myself. But that’s hard. Irony. 😂 (is that what it’s called?) and I love that you’re worry helps you not be so critical. I’ve never thought of it that way. I think for me I worry to the point I don’t want to say anything because I’m so of offending. So I hide but God is gently working on that I think.

      Hugs. ❤️

  3. Found myself Amen-ing a lot as I read your post, Julia. First, had to laugh that Wonder Woman (of all topics!) melted the ice for you and your new Instagram friend. Also, that the ticket-taker took you (probably, due to your shorter stature) for a child! Now, Amen to: 1) “We need life spoken into us.” Honest feedback is helpful and necessary; encouragement even more so. 2) “It is an honor to speak into another’s life.” Sometimes we speak for God himself, as his inspiration overtakes our thoughts and words. Afterward, we’re surprised ourselves at what came out of our mouths. 3) “Meditate on life-giving words.” Too often we let go of positive feedback because it seems prideful to hang onto compliments. But that won’t happen if our meditation is based on praise to God for his power and wisdom that provided the wherewithal for accomplishment in the first place. Thank you, Julia, for an encouraging post! A Glory Writer friend, Nancy

    • Thank you, Nancy. Wonder Woman was so much fun! I also feel like the ticket lady may have been taken by my walker too. I have cerebral palsy and I’ve had another friend tell me, she notices when people give me looks and stuff. I never notice and half the time feel out of place as is. Thank you for the encouragement especially with what what you said about 3rd amen! I struggle with holding the positive I think because I don’t want it to come off prideful or let it go to my head. But thank you for the reminder of meditation being based on praise to God. Never thought of that.

      • You’re welcome, Julia. I didn’t realize you had cerebral palsy. Good for you, not noticing when people give you looks! That leaves you free to notice what God would have you write about next! 🙂

  4. Being placed in such a position brings a sense of awkwardness. Yet, inviting someone to speak truth into their lives is bold and demonstrates trust in your character. If it’s based on loving your neighbor as yourself then God’s grace will cover your words.

    • I find your last sentence interesting, Stephanie. I struggle with loving myself. I think the way I’ve seen myself loving my neighbor as myself (maybe) is that I try to encourage others as much as I try to with myself and that only comes from the time I’ve gotten to spend with God. I never realized how much time I’d need. I sucked so quick in negativity. Thank you for making me think. ❤️

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