Yesterday, I was in Acts 4:36-37 and spoke on the character Barnabas (in my year-long series on Acts). Since it was Mother’s Day, I thought it fitting to preach on the characteristics of an encourager as demonstrated in the life of Barnabas, the "son of encouragement,"
For my third characteristic (Encouragers Speak the Truth in Love), I referenced the examples of Barnabas in Acts 11:23-24 and 13:46.
Illustrative of that, I used Alan Redpath’s five questions to use before you speak. Redpath was the pastor of the Moody Church in Chicago in the sixties. He formed a group at the church called the “Mutual Encouragement Fellowship,” and he used the following five questions as guidelines to use before we speak anything of which we have a question:
T – Is it true?
H – Is it helpful?
I – Is it inspiring?
N – Is it necessary?
K – Is it kind?
If what we are about to say does not pass these tests, we should keep our mouth shut.
I had lots of people either ask me for the list, or say that it was going to go up on the wall of their cube at work. I consider there to be few greater compliments than that!