"He died for us so that, whether we are awake or asleep, we may live together with him. Therefore encourage one another and build each other up,
just as in fact you are doing."
When my oldest grandson was about five years old, I commented, “Honey, you’re such an encourager!” He turned and asked, “Nanny, what do encouragers do?” Groping for words he could comprehend, I explained, “They take some of their courage and share it with someone else who needs it!”
Early Christians frequently encouraged one another with the promise of Christ’s return, as do modern-day believers in persecuted countries. With joy and eager anticipation they spoke (and still speak) of heaven and of the Lord’s return. Paul’s words of encouragement to the early believers detailed the Lord’s coming and built them up to weather the storms of persecution that assailed them.
Friends have shared with me that heaven was so much closer, having met with tragic loss or life-threatening illness. My urgent, distracted life had previously dulled my vision of the Lord’s coming and heaven, but when my father went to be with Jesus recently, I gathered courage by knowing that heaven’s joys were now a present reality for him.
CONSIDER HOW YOU MIGHT BUILD UP ONE ANOTHER IN YOUR CHURCH OR FAMILY BY ENCOURAGING EACH OTHER WITH THE ETERNAL VIEW OF JESUS' RETURN.