Posted by: Jo | August 30, 2013

Spurring One Another On

“And let us consider how we may spur one another on towards love and good deeds.” (Hebrews 10:24)

image A few weeks ago my daughter and teenager granddaughter, ran their first Half Marathon race. Preparation for this big race had been hard and arduous. It took lots of discipline for them both to get up early and train together. Our whole family were very proud of them for attempting such a long distance run and on the morning of the race a group of family members went to show their support and to cheer them on to the finish line. Excitement and anticipation filled the street, but it was the overriding feeling of the crowd that was the most infectious. The spectators were united in their cries of support, each one spurring on their friends and family members, encouraging them to finish the race, encouraging them to keep going, encouraging them to cross that finishing line triumphantly. The spectators during the running of the race were not thinking of themselves, but totally lending their support verbally, with smiles and wild gestures to those who were participating. (My two finished triumphantly).

Scripture describes life as a race;

“Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles, and let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us.” (Hebrews 12:1)

When my two marathon runners were training for this big race, they found that running with each other and others who were training, was a great way to be spurred on by their common goal and to remain focused on that goal of running through the finishing line. We have been designed by our Heavenly Father to need each other in this great race of life. That is why the writer of Hebrews urges us to run closely together and to consciously think of ways to spur others on.image

In Hebrews 10:24, the verse begins with the phrase, “let us consider”; when we consider an action we are thinking quite seriously about how we are going to put into practice our decision. This particular verse is asking us to think, not so much of how we are coping with life but how we can provide encouragement to those around us, not to be only concentrating on our own prowess, not to be so consumed as to what is happening to us, but asking the Lord to make us aware of those around us who may be discouraged; who may be exhausted by trials; who may just need a comforting word to help them get up and try again.

When we have eyes to see those who need to be spurred on, it is time to take action. Often our own church community contains many who are weary and discouraged and who are burdened by so many pressing tasks, that their race has become so tiring they can hardly keep pace with those around them. Too often it is our church leaders who are the most burdened by the worries of others, who most need somebody to cheer them on who most need a companion with words of love to give them that extra burst of strength to keep going.

It does not take a lot of effort to provide help for those who need it.  Most pastors have to often deal with complaints; often have to spend hours listening to others problems, imagehave the huge task of keeping the whole congregation happy, so what a boost we can give them by a simple word of praise, a little note thanking them for a great sermon, a recognition of their service to the church.

When we seriously “consider” how we may spur others on, the Holy Spirit will show us exactly those who need us to be cheering them on from the sidelines.

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


  1. Thanks for the encouragement, Jo. I’ve found that focusing on encouraging others take the focus off my discouragements – I just need to do a better job of it.


  2. Thanks again Jo for spurring me on. God bless, Mary.


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