Life At Its Best: Spurring others onto success
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By Jim Graff
What is a spur? If you've lived in South Texas long enough, you know exactly what it is. A spur is a spike on the back of a boot that's used to drive a horse ahead. It makes the horse just uncomfortable enough to realize it's time to move forward.
A spur also presents the perfect picture of what God calls us to do for each other. Hebrews 10:24 says, ". Let us consider how we may spur one another on..."
He has given us the responsibility to spur on those around us by challenging and encouraging them to move forward. Mark 2 gives us a great example of this type of friend.
In Verse 3, the author tells of a paralytic that was brought to see Jesus by four other men. After making several attempts to squeeze through the crowd, they still couldn't get to Jesus. So, determined to see their friend healed, they climbed on the roof, made an opening in the ceiling and lowered him down, directly in front of Jesus.
When Jesus saw the man at his feet, he simply replied, "Son, your sins are forgiven. I tell you, get up, take your mat and go home." And he did! The man - who had been paralyzed for years - was now walking perfectly fine.
Now, it's important to ask - why was this man healed? He didn't seem to be pursuing his healing. He didn't even ask. The truth is the man wasn't healed as a result of his own faith, but because of the faith of his friends that spurred him on.
Maybe you have a friend or family member who - like the paralytic - is fighting a battle and feels like giving up. It's always easier to choose a life of paralysis over one of purpose and passion. That's why it's our job as parents, spouses, friends and fellow Christians to be there to spur them on - to challenge them to take that step forward and support them as they do.
Challenging someone to change is not always easy. Sometimes - like the men in the story - we may be required to dig through things that are holding our friends back. It probably won't be a roof, but it could be a negative attitude, wrong habit or even a damaging relationship. In the difficult times, just remember - God has placed them in your life to help them discover stability and success.
Verse 12 reveals the second step we must take in order to spur our friends in the right direction. It says the friends encouraged the man as he took his first steps.
See, we all make mistakes, but that's not where our focus should be. It should be on supporting each other in our walk with God, so that we are empowered to advance into all the amazing things God has in store.
So, ask yourself - who's counting on you? Together, we can inspire each other to be everything God is calling us to be.
Jim Graff is the Senior Pastor of Faith Family Church in Victoria, Texas. www.faithfamilyvictoria.com