2022 Advent Devotional – Immanuel, God is With Us is Now Available on Kindle

Encouragement in Christ: Introduction

How about some encouragement? Could you use some? Another year of pandemic and who knows how many variants, social unrest, comorbidities of fear, isolation, and uncertainty leave us in need of encouragement.  And not just encouragement, but the “encouragement in Christ” the apostle Paul celebrates (Philippians 2:1).

The etymology of encouragement is “to give courage” and “to make strong”. Each of the following daily reflections seeks to do just that by focusing on God’s Word to give us courage and make us strong. They are written with the prayer that each day you might be encouraged.

The idea for these reflections germinated in early 2020 as we felt steamrolled by the frightening SARS-CoV-2 juggernaut. Suddenly we faced quarantine and confinement with churches boarded shut, ministries hampered, and people isolated from one another. It was then, with encouragement from friends, I looked for a way we might communicate God’s Word across COVID barriers. Unable to meet in person as a ministry, I began recording short podcasts we called “SELAH” which, like its name, invited people to STOP, LOOK and LISTEN for God throughout the days of the pandemic.  Those six-to-eight-minute podcasts, based on Scripture, continue on the Water from Rock website as well as on Facebook and Instagram.

The following reflections are adaptations of the spoken words of those SELAH podcasts. In each podcast, I imagined talking to a friend with a Bible in one hand and a cup of coffee in the other. I wanted each podcast to be conversational with a relaxed and casual manner of everyday discussion.  We are pleased to offer you these daily reflections with the prayer that God might use them to give you courage and make you stronger.  We do hope that with each reflection you find “encouragement in Christ”. 

Each day’s reflection concludes with a TAKE AWAY in which you are asked to talk with God about any “take away” you receive from the day’s reading.  And if you find yourself encouraged in that “take away”, why not share it with someone who might be in need of encouragement.  For, as Scripture says: “Therefore encourage one another and build each other up, as indeed you are doing” (1 Thessalonians 5:11).

recent posts

join our list

Sign up and receive our weekly devotionals, Selah podcast episodes, info on seasonal devotionals, and announcements.