First Thessalonians 5:1–11 tells us that Christ died for us so that we can live together with Him. “Therefore encourage one another and build each other up…”
It is crucial that we encourage our brothers and sisters in our small groups, where we “live together with Him.” Here are some specific ways to do so:
- Write an encouraging letter (Paul to Timothy).
- Share how God has dealt with you in your life—your personal testimony of overcoming and growth (Paul’s testimony in Acts 22).
- Offer your supportive presence, even when you do not understand (the women at the cross).
- Affirm another person’s worth by doing kindness when he hurts (Jesus in Matthew 25—feed the hungry, visit the prisoners, clothe the naked).
- Absorb another person’s problems into yourself (pay his debts—Paul with Onesimus; the Good Samaritan).
- Rejoice with another in his successes (Acts 5:41).
- Jump in and help someone else actually complete a job (John and Peter with Philip in Samaria).
- Stand up for a brother or sister, defending that person when others disparage him or her (Barnabas for Paul).
- Pray (Paul for the Romans).
- Review with a brother or sister the record of God’s involvement in our past and present so he or she can get the future into perspective (Paul to the Philippians, and on the shipwreck).
Adapted from Discipleship Journal’s Best Small-Group Ideas (Vol. 1), ©1996, 2005 by Discipleship Journal. Used by permission of NavPress, all rights reserved.