My husband Rick and I are taking an online course right now called Encourage Them All. Today we had a zoom recap and one of the takeaways for us was to have meaningful conversations with people this holiday season where we invite people to tell their stories. We want to be intentional about putting aside our journey and focusing on valuing people and listening to them tell their story about their life. We want to celebrate with them their victories and comfort them in their sorrows.

Last week, we drove from Chicago to Atlanta to comfort a family whose dad died in a motorcycle accident.

It was so evident that we basically needed to listen to each member of the family and focus completely on them and what they are going through.

This verse came to mind from Romans 12:15: In ESV it says:

Rejoice with those who rejoice, weep with those who weep.

And this one too: 1 Thessalonians 5:11
“Therefore encourage one another and build each other up, just as in fact you are doing.”

What stands out to you from these verses?

So, I challenge you to use this holiday season to give the gift to people of listening to their stories,

celebrating wit them their victories and comforting them in their sorrows.

We can set aside our journeys to give this gift to a world that is starving for someone to listen to them and what they are going through.

We can do this on the phone, on zoom, face time, or in person at a meal or over a cup of tea.

I’m hoping to invite neighbors over to hear their stories as we use our gifts of hospitality to bless others.



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