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Lifting Others Higher

By BILL KENT

The puppy looks pitiful. He is losing weight and has no energy. When he was born, Rambo was healthy and active. The owner is worried and the veterinarian tells him his puppy has the dreaded Parvovirus. It will take a lot of tender, loving care if Rambo is to start growing and running again. If nothing is done, then he will keep on getting thinner and weaker, but he might get well with the proper treatment. The owner decides to give it a try and does what it takes to help Rambo regain his strength. After several weeks, he is looking and feeling better.
Even though we might be healthy, we all need a lift sometimes to help us remain cheerful and confident. Positive energy comes through kind words, music, a good laugh, an inspiring book, an expression of appreciation, or pleasant time with an encouraging person who sees the good in us. We all benefit from people like Aunt Rose. She came and stayed with 4 small children when our mother had surgery. She fed us, talked, laughed and helped us in so many ways.
The strongest and bravest people benefit from uplifting words and actions. When Moses’ arms grew weary, “Aaron and Hur supported his hands, one on one side, and the other on the other side; and his hands were steady until the going down of the sun,” (Exodus 17:12). Jeremiah could finish his ministry tasks because an Ethiopian named Ebed-Melech spoke up for him. When others sought to destroy the prophet, this man spoke up to rescue Jeremiah from certain death in a dungeon with no food.
The Apostle Paul couldn’t do one thing as a spokesman for Christ until Barnabas convinced other church leaders to believe Paul was now a friend seeking to build up rather than tear down Christianity. In his letters, Paul carefully mentioned lesser known people who cheered him on as he risked his life on the front lines of ministry.  Lydia, Phoebe, Onesiphorus, and Epaphroditus might not have buildings or colleges named for them but they pleased God by lifting up others. As he wrote to believers, he spoke of people coming together to give each other a boost.
Bill Kent is pastor of Pitts Baptist Church