STRENGTHENING

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Daily Reading: 2 Kings 13:1-14:29 ESV, Acts 18:23-19:12 ESV, Psalm 146:1-10 ESV, Proverbs 18:2-3 ESV

Daily Verse: “After spending some time there, he departed and went from one place to the next through the region of Galatia and Phrygia, strengthening all the disciples.” (Acts 18:23 ESV)

EPISTERIZO (1991): “To support further, i.e., re-establish: confirm (3x), strengthen (1x). This word means to make to lean upon, and thus to strengthen through support.  It is used of confirming souls, brethren, churches, and disciples.”[i]

Support further.

Paul and his buddies spent their time encouraging others.  Maintaining faith over the long haul needs support.  When days drag on with nothing happening, we begin to doubt.  “Why God?” quickly becomes a mantra.  Just because we can’t see anything happening from our perspective doesn’t mean God’s not working.  God doesn’t waste time; He uses every moment for the kingdom’s glory.

Walking with others on their journey supports them.  When tough times hit, and they will, for all of us, we need someone to sit quietly with us, God’s hands and feet in our time of need.  And when we rejoice, we need others to celebrate with us.  God created us for community.  Experiencing life’s ups and downs together defines community.

Show up.

One of my favorite church communities meets in Mt. Pleasant, S.C.  Privileged to help plant Life Community Church in 2007; they have taught me the value of living life together.

In 2018 when Bryan, the worship leader, lost his life to robbers while completing a house for a homeless veteran, the tragedy crippled LCC.  But they persevered, as a community, showing up for each other day after day. 

In a message from their lead pastor, Mike, Bryan’s father, shot five times during the robbery, miraculously surviving, told people the best thing they could do for them is “show up.”  Just show up and walk with us as we navigate the days ahead.  Help us keep moving forward.

And they have, for over four years, the members of LCC show up for each other.  Spurring each other onward, trusting God’s plan amid great sadness.

Community encourages each other to move forward into God’s purpose for their lives.  Spurring each other onward comes with following Jesus.  Just like Christ strengthens us, we can help support others.



[i] Strong, J., & Strong, J. (2010). The New Strong’s expanded exhaustive concordance of the Bible. Greek Dictionary of the New Testament (p. 99) Thomas Nelson

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