Today’s Scripture: Now we exhort you, brethren, warn them that are unruly, comfort the feebleminded, support the weak, be patient toward all men. 1¬†Thessalonians¬†5:14

Henry Ford considered Thomas Edison to be the most important man he knew. While Ford was working on his gas engine, he met Edison for the first time. Ford admitted later that he was discouraged because he was going against the models of his colleagues and other inventors and had received very little encouragement. Edison told Ford that he was on the right track and not to give up. From a man like Edison, who had already revolutionized the world with his inventions, this was big praise. The two became close friends and the families often camped and vacationed together.

When my wife, Linda, and I first came to Chicago we thought we would have 1,000 people in our church the first year. We worked our hardest, but it soon became apparent that we would be fortunate to have ten strong believers by the end of the first year. One day, a young man that I had led to Christ gave me a small cannon that I keep in my office today. Inside was a rolled up note that read, “Jim, someday you will have the biggest church in all of Chicago.” His words encouraged me and brought an incredible peace. While I knew there was a lot of hard work in front of us, somehow his encouragement helped me persevere.

Does someone you know need a fresh dose of hope? Why don’t you be the one to give it? Take a moment and be an encouragement to someone. It might be the start of something big.

Devotional by Dr. James A. Scudder