Maybe it was a hug or a hand on your shoulder, an “I believe in you” glance, or a card sent in the mail. It came at the moment you needed it most, and it encouraged you to stick it out, or to take that risk, or make that next step. And you’ve never been the same.
Starting now, I’d like to do a new series of posts that focus on people who make a difference. There are many, many ways to make a difference, and sometimes it’s the little things that have the most lasting impact.
Take for instance, this story about Sarah Edwards, the wife of the well known preacher Jonathan Edwards. In 1741 the Edwards’ opened their home to a young discouraged pastor named Samuel Hopkins. In his own words:
I was very gloomy and was most of the time retired in my chamber. After some days, Mrs. Edwards came…and said as I was now become a member of the family for a season, she felt herself interested in my welfare and as she observed that I appeared gloomy and dejected, she hoped I would not think she intruded [by] her desiring to know and asking me what was the occasion of it…I told her…I was in a Christless, graceless state…upon which we entered into a free conversation and…she told me that she had [prayed] respecting me since I had been in the family; that she trusted I should receive light and comfort and doubted not that God intended yet to do great things by me. (pg 26Faithful Women and their Extraordinary God, by Noelle Piper)
Although she had seven children of her own at the time, she took an interest in him reached out with words of encouragement. He never forgot it, and went on to become a pastor in Newport, Rhode Island. The town was entrenched in the slave trade. He spoke out strongly against it, and although his message was unpopular, one young man, William Ellery Channing, was so inspired that he became a pastor himself. William went on to influence Emerson and Thoreau, and played a major part in the abolitionist movement. (Faithful Women, pg 26)
Have you had a Sarah Edwards in your life, someone who forever changed you with their words of encouragement? I want to hear about it! This month, write a post about someone who encouraged you, or how you encouraged someone, and email it to me! I’ll feature them throughout the month so that we can all be inspired and encouraged to do the same!
Has someone already come to mind? Before you start typing, take a look at my guest post guidelines.
I CAN’T WAIT to hear your stories!!! In the meantime, do you have any suggestions for the title of the series? “Make a Difference Monday” was already taken, so I came up with “World Change Wednesday.” But I’d really like to be able to feature the posts on Fridays. It doesn’t have to use alliteration, but I am looking for something catchy. Leave a suggestion in the comments!