Riverside Community Church

Encourage One Another

Q      What kind of person are you?


         Outgoing                                      reserved

         Comfortable with others             prefer to fly solo

         Confident, poised                         awkward, somewhat uncomfortable

         People like you, drawn to you     not so sure people really like me

         Share easily with others              please not so close,

         Extrovert                                       introvert or some shade of it


Who you are right now may not be all that God wants you to be! Because what we are looking at today will be extremely hard for half of you and the other half, it will be difficult also but you may not WANT to do it.  BUT YOU MUST


I want us to go on a journey together as a church over the next 3 months and discover what true Christian Community is, authentic body life. To discover exactly what we are to be and do for each other. And I am convinced as we study and teach on the one another’s of the Bible it will be transformational, in us and in you.


There are some 21 one-anothers in the Bible and we plan to land on most them.  Last week we looked at LOVE ONE ANOTHER. We all need to know how we are to conduct ourselves with each other. IT WILL TRANSFORM YOU INDIVIDUALLY AND TRANSFORM RIVERSIDE. If we do it together.


Listen to this simple instruction from the Bible on body life at Riverside

1 Thessalonians 5:11

Therefore encourage one another and build each other up, …


Isolation from encouragement from other Christians is absolutely dangerous.

It’s like being in a desert, dying of thirst and finding a well only to discover its emptiness.

It’s hard to survive let alone live abundantly as a Christian when you are in isolation, no encouragement        . It can lead to depression, being down, and when that has a vice grip on you it turns into despair.


You might not be discouraged right now but you know someone who is. You may not be discouraged right now but just keep on living, it’s coming. Life has a way of coming at you and coming hard. The church is to be a place of encouragement, it’s the best place God made for love and encouragement, real spiritual community, that is alive, well and encouraging.


Many people are living under a heavy load of discouragement and even depression.

The weight of disappointment and discouragement sits crushingly upon their shoulders, a relationship gone sour, children gone bad, a vice they couldn’t overcome, a career gone sideways, a life full of problems, disappointment on how life is turning out. And we are discouraged.


Here is the point today 

1 Thessalonians 5:11

Therefore encourage one another and build each other up, …


So for all those inclined to be more introverted, more inside, you can’t stay there when God tells you: “speak up and encourage one another”. And for those who are more outgoing, you may not want to be an encourager but you must according to God.





God has told us to be encouragers and it is each of ours’ responsibility

Definition of encourage:      “to call to one’s side”

In other words to inspire, to give courage, to motivate, to help achieve, to build up, to strengthen, to consol.


Back in 1929 when the great depression struck and millions of people where in great turmoil, discouraged greatly and many despaired to the point of suicide,

Franklin Roosevelt developed a NEW DEAL to get the people out of the great depression. Well, God has a new deal and it’s called the church and a significant part of the church are the ONE ANOTHERS and this particular one ‘ENCOURAGE ONE ANOTHER.

To encourage is to encourage with your words and actions, words can also be terribly discouraging to others. Words without love and encouragement, but criticisms or complaints or your expressions of preferences can damage people, discourage them and they may never get over it until you help them over it.




It is not about us or the individual but about US the body, the family doing encouraging together. Before any of you criticize me or any of my brothers or sisters here at Riverside, before you critique anybody here, before you point out our failure, an oversight, a weakness:

                 1st    LOVE them (choose to love them with your mind)

                 2nd ENCOURAGE THEM

(appreciate them, thank them, be gracious toward them, help them)

Use the 10:1 ratio; 10 encouragements to 1 criticism ratio.


If we do this it would change us dramatically, and our relationship with each other would blossom. THIS WHAT GOD WANTS FOR US IN HIS CHURCH.


The way of the world is to criticize and to tear down. This is not the church

The way of the church, Riverside, you and I is to love and encourage one another.


How do I encourage others here?

Murray Bickle is my wife, Marilyn’s father. And I can recall walking into his house on many occasions and he would stand up with such an expression of joy at my appearance and proceed to give me the warmest of handshakes and greetings.

He recognized my presence, he made me feel noticed, significant, important.

Murray Bickle’s greeting to me was enough to encourage me to keep on going, to keep on working on my marriage to his daughter, to grow as a Christian. The impact and now that he is gone I truly miss him and his encouragement.


How do I encourage others here?

1)   RECOGNIZE PEOPLE, notice their presence in your space with joy.

If you can’t do it with joy, and many of you will have difficulty, you have to change that. Often, we don’t like a person’s character or personality and it becomes and defines how you treat them. We are family, brothers and sisters, don’t try to change people into who you are and how you think: love and encourage others for who they are and how they think.



Appreciate others for who they are, what they are doing and even what they have done. Appreciate verbally to a member of the worship team, Jim who makes the coffee, Amanda who cleans, Dianne who gets Communion ready, the greeters, kid’s club workers, nursery people, Norm for BLT, Priscilla who made the curtain around the baptismal tank, there are many others, all of you need to be encouraged. Through appreciation, verbally expressed appreciation.


You may think, I don’t know what to say, or I’ll say the wrong thing: no you won’t.

If you care for others, you’ll say the right thing, God will help you.


As a community of believers belonging to this body, this spiritual family, we need to journey together and the journey is not easy so all the more we need to encourage one another.


When Liam, my grandson, was learning to walk, he would often take a step and fall flat on his bum. ‘Come on Liam, you can do it, get up and do it again.’ I would say. He would keep falling down and we would keep encouraging him to keep trying. One day while we were babysitting at our house. Marilyn held him up on his feet and I was six feet away encouraging him to come to Papa. “Come on Liam, you can do it, I’ll catch you, go ahead.”       AND HE DID IT. Why? Because he was encouraged.


Is that like you, need some encouragement! Riverside is a place designed by God to encourage others and to be encouraged. People let’s BE THE CHURCH;


ENCOURAGE ONE ANOTHER and remember the 10:1 RATIO  and verbalize it.