We are making a call for an army of encouragers to rise up to help those who need it. Please consider being part of this outreach. It’s a great cause.
Essentially, this “army” is made up of those who encourage and mentor others in their marriages. This is something we are asking of those who have healthy marriages. You may not have a “perfect” marriage (who does?). But if you have a good marriage —one that you keep growing, that’s mostly what it takes.
Maybe you are a wife, or are a husband, or maybe you are a married couple that can answer this call.
What is a mentor?
“A marriage mentor is a happy more experienced couple who empowers another married couple through sharing resources and relational experiences. It’s a broad definition because there is no one right way to mentor. Each mentoring relationship takes on its own style.” (Drs David and Jan Stoop)
It can also be one spouse encouraging another, on a one-on-one basis. Just make sure that husbands mentor husbands and wives mentor wives.
We’re asking for those who will be “difference makers” in helping others who are married. There are so many people who are quick to advise those who are married to “move on” when there are problems. But what we especially need is encouragers, rather than discouragers. It’s important that we make this more of a marriage friendly world, in helping one another so we can “run the race” more effectively.
Here’s something that Janet Thomas says about mentoring:
“Mentors are those who have walked a broken road and survived, to share your story, wisdom, and failures… as God leads you. Offer hope to those who can’t see past today! God allows us to go through trials because He has a greater purpose than we can see. One of those purposes is to comfort those on a similar journey. You understand what they are dealing with… when no one else can. You know how to pray for them. It may be that you can help them avoid things that you didn’t avoid. Guide them through the deep waters so that one day they can guide someone else. Most importantly, point them to the ultimate Guide: Jesus Christ!”
Keep in mind what Meg Wilson wrote:
“God’s Word makes it clear that we’re not meant to be individual islands. He calls us to meet together, to encourage one another, and to confess to other believers our struggles. He designed us to be in community and understands the meaning of synergy, the benefit of combined effort.”
So, that’s what we’re challenging you to do. Be an encourager. You don’t have to be a counselor, or have it all together. You just need to look to see where there is someone that could use some encouragement (perhaps, careful advice) and give it.
Ask God to show you how you can do this. You could teach a marriage class —a short termed one, or longer. Consider getting a group together at your church that wants to help marriages. You could brainstorm ideas and combine talents. Below are two links to articles that may help in some way:
• STRENGTHENING OTHER MARRIAGES – Marriage Message #365
• MARRIAGE MENTORING IDEAS FOR A CHURCH
Also, we can sure use help in this ministry.
Here are a few things you can do… to help those who reach out to Marriage Missions:
- We desperately need spouses who will come to our web site and pray for those who post on the Prayer Wall. Perhaps you can let that person know that you prayed for them.
- Encourage those who need it who leave comments on the Marriage Missions Facebook Page. It is so very, very needed! You could even find a link to an article posted on our web site that you could recommend to them that addresses their problem. Praying for them, leaving an encouraging word, or recommending an article could minister to their needs. Please prayerfully consider doing this.
- We also need those who will go into the articles and reach out to those who need uplifting, cheering them on. (On the Home Page of this web site, we have the “Latest Comments” posted on the side bar, near the bottom, if that helps.) Sometimes sharing an experience, and/or passing on a scripture can be helpful. Pray about it.
Below is something one of our “encouragers” wrote to someone who responded back to his earlier encouragement. We think it shows his heart, and ours, and furthermore, that it will be inspirational to you. There is no way that we can respond to every comment. That’s why comments from others, who can encourage (and sometimes give tidbits of advice) can be SO helpful!
Our friend in Christ wrote:
Hi, Yes God does work in mysterious ways. We have seen this many times, and there are always surprises waiting around the next corner. It is so good that you replied. Thank you so much! I see many requests and read such tragic stories. I write what I feel God is saying to me. It is my hope that the replies are read, and that the writers of the requests feel supported and cared for instead of forsaken and alone. Thank you :) WP (Work in Progress)
Here are More Ideas:
- Are you a writer? Please consider submitting something to Marriage Missions, for us to look over, that can help marriages. We especially love to share testimonies where spouses have come out on the victorious side of a difficult situation. Just send it in through the Contact Us link. Please send it in email form. Don’t send it in an attachment because we can’t open attachments.
- Consider adopting a topic or an article or several on this web site. Keep visiting it (or several) to see if you can minister to someone there. It can be a marital situation (topic) that you feel you have learned, and grown through, so you can be an encourager there.
- Add any additional tips you can think of to encourage others by “Joining in” the discussion below this Insight.
Whether you help in this ministry, and/or you look for ways to encourage elsewhere, be intentional about it. Pray about it. Ask God to give you eyes to see those who are married (or are considering marriage), who could use some encouragement. If you feel you can humbly give advice from things you have learned, do so prayerfully, with the boldness God can give you.
Mentoring is a Great Option
You can also ask your pastor if he knows of someone you can mentor for a period of time. Or ask him if he knows of someone who can mentor you, so you grow stronger and THEN you can mentor others.
We have articles, quotes, etc… posted on our web site that can show you how simple mentoring can be. They’re posted in the Marriage Counseling and Mentoring topic for your convenience.
“What is fundamental to look for in a mentor?”
Here’s some guidance from Meg Wilson:
“When deciding if a person or group is safe, the first step is always prayer. The Holy Spirit is able to give amazing insight.
- Next, look for people who are: • nonjudgmental (they don’t decide, they guide).
- They should be respectful (they set and observe healthy boundaries).
- It’s important that they are spiritual (they point to Christ not to pat religious answers).
- They should be listeners (they really hear you).
- Mentors need to be objective (they’re able to give and receive loving criticism).
- And they must be humble (they know when to say, “I don’t know”).
The Call for an Army of Mentors
We hope you will answer this call… this calling. Finally, remember what we are told in Titus 2:1-8:
“You must teach what is in accord with sound doctrine. Teach the older men to be temperate, worthy of respect, self-controlled, and sound in faith, in love and in endurance. Likewise, teach the older women to be reverent in the way they live, not to be slanderers or addicted to wine, but to teach what is good. Then they can train the younger women to love their husbands and children, to be self-controlled and pure, to be busy at home, to be kind, and to be subject to their husbands, so that no one will malign the word of God. Similarly, encourage the young men to be self-controlled.
In everything set them an example by doing what is good. In your teaching show integrity, seriousness and soundness of speech that cannot be condemned, so that those who oppose you may be ashamed because they have nothing bad to say about us.“
Also, remember to “encourage one another daily, as long as it is called Today, so that none of you may be hardened by sin’s deceitfulness.” (Hebrews 3:13) We’re told in 1 Thessalonians 5:11, “Therefore encourage one another and build each other up…” We hope and pray you will.
Cindy and Steve Wright
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Filed under: Marriage Insights
17 responses to “NEEDED: An Army of Encouragers”
I would like to join this army of encouragers.
Hi Christine. We’re so thrilled you want to join this army. Please re-read this article because I just added some additional tips that you may find helpful. Ask God what He shows you to do. We love locking arms with you as we participate with God together. … May God bless the ministry of encouragement that He gives you :)
I am 64 years old. My marriage is 37. I have 17 years experience as a marriage counselor. I want to join this army of encouragers.
Abel, You are a blessing to Cindy and me and we welcome you to this marriage ministry as an ambassador to marriages. If you spend only 30 minutes reading through the comments that come into us every day it will become obvious the deep needs that are in marriages all over the world. People come to us in desperation looking for hope – a “life-line” for their problems. They come to us because we’re a “safe” place for them to vent (they can remain anonymous).
We also know that even a brief reply from someone, like yourself, who empathizes with their situation, maybe give some words of encouragement and offers to pray for them can give them the hope they so desperately needed. With your background you could do much in this area. However, we don’t expect you to over commit yourself to this web site. We want to be clear – we are not expecting people with any professional training to provide free counseling to the visitors to our web site.
If you have time to go through a few of the topics and articles that interest you the most, you can get a feel for what we offer and what draws people to Marriage Missions.
We know you will be a blessing and a tremendous asset to this ministry. Thanks, Abel!
I would like to join the army of encouragers. Shalom.
Tunde, Thank you for joining with us in this wonderful cause. Please prayerfully re-read this article because I just added a lot more info that you may find helpful as you seek God to show you how to regularly be a marriage encourager. This is such a marriage un-friendly world we now live in with multitudes of people being quick to discourage people from fighting FOR their marriages. I pray the Lord works within you and through you to help those who need the encouraging words He will give you. May you be blessed!
I would like to join this army of encouragers.
Nola, It’s so good to hear this. Thank you for joining us. My suggestion is that you pray, asking God to show you HIS eyes. Ask Him to show you what He wants to do in and through you to encourage others… particularly in the area of marriage. Prayerfully read through this Marriage Insight again, because I just added a lot of additional info that you may find helpful. Also read as many articles on this web site that you can to better educate yourself. Sometimes we are quieter encouragers and other times we are up front encouragers. God will lead you as you pray and seek for where He wants to lead you. Thanks Nola, for participating with God, and joining us, and many, many others, in this awesome way.
Cindy, I applaud you and Steve for putting this request out there. It is badly needed! Marriage is under tremendous attack in our country. And as a body of believers we are very busy and distracted in our lives. In my experience, relationships of any significant depth between married couples seem to be few and far between. In our own lives, and even with us being deeply involved in ministry, my wife and I have no other couples who we have what we would call a close relationship with. I fear that this is far too common amongst couples. Most of our relationships seem to be much more on the surface, which presents a challenge. We can encourage other couples in their marriage in a general way, but sometimes they will need more than that. As we step forward as encouragers, and as we begin to pray earnestly for God to use us… He will answer our prayer… And we will find ourselves being asked by Him to speak truth and encouragement into the life of someone else at a deeper level. As you so wisely mentioned, we need to be praying. I would like to emphasize that we REALLY need to be praying… a LOT… because God will be using us in situations where we may have little previous relationship with the other person… so we need to be heavily relying on the Spirit to give us His perfect words of truth and love to speak.
May your request for an Army of Encouragers be responded to by many!
M., Thanks for your encouragement. We are also grateful that you have taken up the challenge even before we posted this Blog. Whenever Cindy and I see someone like yourself who comes into our web site to pray for and offer advice to people who desperately need it, we feel a bit of the burden lifted from our shoulders. It has always been our desire to respond to everyone who posts, but that is logistically impossible. We had been praying for quite a while for God to start sending ambassadors who would be willing to come in periodically to pray through the prayer requests that had been posted and leave comments to others if you have some insight that could be helpful to the person who posted. And you have done that! Thanks! ~Steve Wright
I would like to join the army of mentors.
May God bless you as you bless others, who are married. Please re-read this article because I have added some additional information, as well as links to other info that you may find helpful. Pray and ask God what He would like for you to do… and keep praying. God will, I’m sure, keep speaking to you on this issue, as you keep seeking His ways. We need more people who will speak life into marriages, instead of negativity. May the Lord bless you as you work to reveal and reflect the heart of Christ within marriage.
Thanks a lot Cindy for your encouragement. Although I am not a counselor, I give classes to youngsters who are preparing for the marriage, which is organised by our Archdiocese. It is a good thing we have started for several years now, so that no young person get married without knowing about this important sacrament. Some of the participants come with some reluctance, but by the time they complete the 3-day course they are happy to say ” we would have really missed many things if we had not participated in the course”. Even with all these preparations, several marriages run into problems even in a conservative society like India. Cindy and Steve, I must tell you that I get a lot of ideas to share with the young people here in India which can make their marriage more meaningful. My wife is also interested to join me in praying for them and giving encouraging words to those who are in trouble. Thanks once again for the encouragements.
Hi Cindy. I have read a lot of your articles and am grateful for this website. I have learned a lot about marriage, something I had taken for granted when I said I do. It is through you and Steve that I can boast of a wonderful marriage. I would like to join the army of encouragers.
Thank you Tjiyapo. You have blessed us in letting us get a peek into what God is doing in and through the work He is leading and enabling us to do. We give God all the glory. It’s absolutely heart-warming to hear that you have a “wonderful marriage.” And it’s great to hear that you are joining the army of encouragers. The tough times you have gone through will help you all the more to be able to encourage others… you can comfort those with the comfort God has given you. Please read through this article, and the linked ones, and pray. Ask God to open your eyes so you see what He would want for you to do –whether it is a “word fitly spoken” or a hug, or leading in some way, etc… God may or may not expand upon that leading, but I hope you will follow His lead and empowerment. We started out small –first with me reaching out to one woman at a time. And eventually it was Steve too. And then both of us began ministering to one couple at a time. It grew and grew from there to something we never imagined. God is able to do “exceedingly, abundantly beyond what we ask or think…” You never know what God can do with one willing heart. He is amazing!
Thanks again for sharing your testimony with us. You have blessed our hearts, and we know you will bless many others. “May the Lord direct your heart into God’s love and Christ’s perseverance.” (2 Thessalonians 3:5) I pray for you. “And this is my prayer: that your love may abound more and more in knowledge and depth of insight, so that you may be able to discern what is best and may be pure and blameless until the day of Christ, filled with the fruit of righteousness that comes through Jesus Christ —to the glory and praise of God.” (Philippians 1:9-11)
For this God ordained entity, which is the ultimate foundation upon which the church, society and nation is built, an opportunity like this cannot be ignored. This is a call to answer to.
Thank you Thabo… we absolutely agree. There are lots of discouragers out there –readily hurting marriages. We need to stand up and be encouragers and helpers… pointing them to ways they can work THROUGH their marriage problems, rather than trying to flee FROM them. It’s hard work to seek out solutions, and follow through in applying them. It also takes Godly wisdom –continually seeking His guidance and strength. Thank you for joining this army of compassionately reaching out to encourage spouses who need it. May God bless you in this mission.