Good job

“… when I come I may not have to be harsh in my use of authority—the authority the Lord gave me for building you up, not for tearing you down”  2 Corinthians 13:10 (NIV) 

The Apostle Paul was writing to the believers in Corinth. He understood that if he wanted them to grow and develop in their faith, he would need to instruct them founded in encouragement rather than instruction based on just continual correction.

I talked to a 70 year old man who told me of a recent experience he had with his father. He went to visit his 95 year old dad and noticed the rickety, small TV that he was watching. He decided to help his father by rearranging the room and installed a big new TV set. Now, he grew up under this father who only corrected him, never a thank you or word of encouragement. The next day he gets a phone call from dad. Completely expecting his never-pleased-father to tell him all the mistakes he made setting up the upgraded room and TV, he braced himself. But then heard for the first time; “thank you, son, for everything you did with the new arrangement and television. You did a great job”.  My new 70 year old friend told me that he has longed to hear that all his life.

Coaches, teachers, friends, bosses,…, and parents all tend to only correct as they feel they are molding and helping to develop those they influence. But the truth is that without a foundation of encouragement and praise, true learning will not happen. In fact, frustration, bitterness, and a resistance to instruction will raise it’s ugly head.

God is a great teacher, appreciating any efforts we put forth to know Him and grow in our faith-walk. He gives us room to make mistakes and start over. He longs to encourage us like He did when He told Jesus, “this is my Son who I love and am well pleased”. Or when He said,”well done my good and faithful servant”. We need to look to encourage, praise, and thank those who we direct or instruct.


Heavenly Father, thank You for Your patience with me. Help me to pass that on to those I interact with. In Jesus’ Name. Amen.

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