Summary: We can’t always depend upon others to encourage us ! We need to learn how to encourage ourselves in the Lord !
How To Encourage Yourself !
Last Sun night I preached on encouraging other people. Everyone needs a little encouraging. Some folks alot ! Everyone needs to be an encourager ! But what do we do when there is no one around to encourage us. Or perhaps no one seems to be able to encourage us. I’m convinced that we can be with the Lord’s help our own greatest encourager ! Let me tell you why.
*Illust. You know how it is when your back gets to itching, but you just can’t seem to reach that spot ! I remember watching my granddaddy back up to a post on the front porch, and try to scratch his itch. Now what I usually do is call one of the girls. Yet, the problem is their not the one who have the itch so they don’t know exactly where to scratch.
So Preacher the point is ?
No one other than God knows better what you need than you do ! No one knows your weaknesses, your pain, what you’re going through better than you ! No one knows what you need more than you do other than the Lord himself !
So, we need to know how to encourage ourselves, how to build up our faith, how to become stronger spiritually so that we can encourage ourselves !
Notice what Jude says in V20 "But ye beloved, building up yourselves on your most holy faith, praying in the Holy Ghost.
Have you ever heard someone say "I didn’t get anything out of the service today !" Or perhaps you’ve said it yourself ?
Some folks express it another way......."I’m just not getting fed"
Now there’s a problem with that ! We can’t always depend upon someone else to give us what we need spiritually. We can’t always expect the preacher or teacher to build our faith. Neither can we expect someone else to always lift us up, and encourage us. We can build ourselves up ! We can encourage ourselves in our faith ! Jude shares some insight into how we can do this !
I. We can be led in our prayers ! V.20
What is Jude talking about ? Praying in the Holy Ghost ?
I believe that Jude is saying that we have someone to help us in our prayer life. We have someone to teach us how to pray, and what to pray for. Have you ever been so discouraged that you didn’t even know how to pray ? That’s when we need to be sensitive to the Holy Spirit, and allow him to be the helper in our prayers !
Paul defined it this way......Rom 8:26 Likewise the Spirit also helpeth our infirmities: for we know not what we should pray for as we ought: but the Spirit itself maketh intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered.
Now let me share something both fascinating, and wonderful about this verse ! Note the word "helpeth"...the word in the greek means "to take hold of together". Now look at the word "infirmities". This word means "feebleness or weakness".
Picture this....I know you’ve done this. You see someone struggling to lift something by themselves, or having difficulty with carrying something, and so you say...."Let me help you with that !"
Here is what the Holy Spirit does. He sees us when we are struggling to carry our burdens, and he comes along and says " Let me help you with that ". He knows when we are struggling in our prayers, when our words don’t seem to express the pain that we feel ! He comes alongside of us, and helps us with our prayers ! The Spirit of God incites us to pray, inspires us, and intercedes on our behalf when our prayers are unutterable !
John 16 Comforter-Paraclete
Here’s something else we can do to encourage ourselves in our faith !
II. We can be loyal in our position ! V.21
"Keep yourselves in the love of God,...."
Jude is not speaking here of keeping ourselves saved ! We are kept by the power of God, sealed by his Spirit, held in the hand of God so firmly that nothing or no one can snatch us out !
Jude is not saying that’s God love is conditional ! We can do nothing to save ourselves, and neither can we do anything to keep ourselves saved ! Likewise, we cannot earn God’s love ! Thank God we don’t have to ! His love is unconditional. It is not dependent upon what we do !
Some folks are in relationships where they feel that they have to keep something or keep giving something in order to continue being loved. They fear that they will lose love ! That’s not real love ! We need never fear losing God’s love ! His love is everlasting !