‘Phebe… a succourer of many.’ Romans 16:1-2 KJV
Your church needs members committed to supporting and encouraging each other. People like Phebe, whom Paul calls ‘a succourer of many’. Succour: in Greek, it applied to Olympic coaches who supported athletes and made sure they were trained and equipped to win. Bible scholar H.F. Moule describes Phebe as ‘a champion… who stood up for others… a devoted, brave friend of converts in trouble, who fought battles of protest where she found oppression… and pleaded the cause of the poor.’ That’s a heavy-duty assignment! And in today’s ‘Me Generation’ not many are willing to take it on. But the truth is, there’s no greater investment than people.
When you invest in another person you give yourself a gift, because you can’t light their path without brightening your own. And the divine rewards outweigh any earthly compensation: ‘Whatever good anyone does, he will receive the same from the Lord.’ (Ephesians 6:8 NKJV) As one pastor observed: ‘You have something nobody else can give. Think about how you can make somebody else’s life better. Who can you support and strengthen? Somebody needs your encouragement today… needs to know you believe in him, that you’re for him, that you think he has what it takes to succeed. Looking back, chances are someone played a pivotal role in helping you get where you are today. A parent or teacher who had confidence in you… a boss who placed you in a higher position when you didn’t feel qualified… somebody who saw more in you than you saw in yourself.’ Now it’s your turn!
SoulFood: Job 15–17, Luke 1:39–56, Ps 128, Ecc 10:1–4
The Word for Today is authored by Bob and Debby Gass and published under licence from UCB International Copyright 2023