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Words of Encouragement

Writing Letters of Encouragement and Strength

There is an insightful story about a man who lost his legs and left arm in a tragic accident. After the accident, only a finger and thumb remained on his right hand.

However, this man was brilliant, creative, and educated. He had gained much experience while traveling throughout the world. Yet, he became very depressed after his accident. He was afraid that he would spend his life suffering and would no longer be able to use his life in a meaningful way.

One day, he remembered how he had always loved getting letters. He realized that he still had partial function of his right hand and could write with difficulty. Then, he had an idea. "Why not write to other people who need encouragement?"

He wondered where he could find other people who felt alone and could be encouraged if they read his letters. He thought of people in prisons. Many of these people had hope of regaining their freedom. Others would keep feeling dejected and remain locked away for the rest of their lives. He decided that he must try to reach them.

He wrote to a prison ministry about sending letters to the inmates. The prison minister replied that writing to the inmates would be acceptable. However, it would be against prison rules for the inmates to write back. The reply stated, "Unfortunately, your letters will not be answered."

Filled with the intention of his idea, the man knew he had to write his letters. He began sending one-way messages of God's love, hope, strength, and encouragement.

He wrote twice a week, testing his strength and ability to the limit. He poured his heart and soul into his words, sharing his experience, sense of humor, optimism, and faith.

It was difficult to write those letters, especially without hope of a reply. Frequently, he felt discouraged. He often wondered if anyone actually read his letters. However, this was his one remaining chance, a truly worthwhile purpose. He resolved to continue as long as God gave him the encouragement and strength to write.

One day he received a letter from the prison ministry. It was a short note from the officer who monitored and censored the prison mail.

The letter said, "Please write on the best paper you can afford. Your letters are passed from cell to cell until they literally fall to pieces!"

No matter what circumstances life may present, we all have unique experiences, abilities, and God-given talents. We can discover ways to reach others who desperately need messages of encouragement and strength. This discovery begins with a commitment to what our hearts tell us is a worthwhile purpose.

When we commit to a worthwhile purpose, we begin to fill needs, often in miraculous ways. Intention and commitment grow stronger when we have very important reasons to follow a dream.

Ask yourself these questions:

What has been my best response to challenging, unexpected situations?

What reasons would I need to make a commitment to my most cherished dream?

How could I use a skill or talent to bring life-changing encouragement to someone today?

William Arthur Ward wrote, "A true friend knows your weaknesses but shows you your strengths; feels your fears but fortifies your faith; sees your anxieties but frees your spirit; recognizes your disabilities but emphasizes your possibilities."

You can begin writing letters of encouragement and strength by thinking faith-filled thoughts. Then, act with faith in your ideas, talent, and purpose. Helping others receive encouragement will create self-encouragement and reveal the blessings that your unique purpose will bring to the world.

About the Author
© Copyright 2005 by Steve Brunkhorst. Steve is a professional life success coach, motivational author, and the editor of Achieve! 60-Second Nuggets of Inspiration, a popular mini-zine bringing great stories, motivational nuggets, and inspiring thoughts to help you achieve more in your career and personal life. Get the next issue by visiting Achieve Ezine.

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