16 But thank God! He has given Titus the same enthusiasm for you that I have. 17 Titus welcomed our request that he visit you again. In fact, he himself was very eager to go and see you. 18 We are also sending another brother with Titus. All the churches praise him as a preacher of the Good News. 19 He was appointed by the churches to accompany us as we take the offering to Jerusalem*—a service that glorifies the Lord and shows our eagerness to help.
There is something about having others around us to encourage us forward. A teacher of mine in elementary school by the name of Mrs. Etheridge was one of those people for me. Having moved to a new town and starting over, it was Mrs. Etheridge who welcomed me and made me feel that I was an important part of the class. I can remember wanting to please her with my grades as well as my behavior which for an 11 year old boy was at times suspect…don’t tell my kids! Even after heading to middle school there was still a desire to share with Mrs. Etheridge to let her know that I she was still making a difference in my life.
It is important to have people in our lives that spur us forward particularly through the difficult and/or important decisions of our life. I’m thankful that God gave us the church to do just that. As you get ready to make your decision about Act II, I would hope that you will have a conversation with a trusted friend about what God has spoken to you and how you intend to respond. It may be the very encouragement your friend needs to do the same. So let us encourage each other on to greater heights and depths of faithfulness as we follow Jesus day by day.
Lord Jesus, you who saved me and planted my feet firmly on solid ground, I ask that you grow my love for you and my family in Christ. May we have the boldness to be faithful in our following and in our encouragement. Amen.