Philemon 1:6-7 – I pray that you may be active in sharing your faith, so that you will have a full understanding of every good thing we have in Christ. Your love has given me great joy and encouragement, because you, brother, have refreshed the hearts of the saints. (NIV)
Children attend my church from a facility that cares for them when their parents are arrested for drugs and other offences. Recently, we discovered that one girl had a beautiful voice. After much pleading and encouraging, our pastor got her to agree to sing a solo.
Her fear was evident to everyone as she stood before the church. For a few seconds, it seemed that her fear would win, but she gained control, and the lovely voice came forth in praise to the Lord to whom she had been introduced. Her voice grew stronger as she continued. As her song ended, the church in unison began to clap. Someone stood, and soon, the entire group was giving a standing ovation for the shy little girl who had almost failed to sing.
It was hard to decide who had been touched the most that morning — the girl receiving the ovation or the people standing.
Our little soloist praised God with her music that day. I like to feel that the praise she received touched her with the joy that comes from singing praises to her Maker and motivated her to continue to serve Him with her voice.
Our congregation was changed that day as we reached out in her time of need. Hopefully, we made a difference.
Prayer: Lord, teach us when to show our encouragement and praise to each other. Teach us when to applaud and when to refrain from applauding. Teach us always to encourage those who are offering praises to You. We know that You are worthy of all praise. Amen.