Recently I traveled to Ecuador for a mission trip. There were twenty-one youth and adults on the team, and each one was instrumental in making an impact for the Kingdom.  During the trip, my main responsibility was to lead training sessions for pastors and leaders in the area. I had an interpreter, but also needed that special partner-I needed a “Barnabas.” God blessed me and sent Leroy.

Leroy was invaluable in many ways. He filled in the gap when my voice needed a break. He demonstrated a servant’s heart, was a great encourager and prayer warrior. Leroy lifted my spirit with his humor and gave feedback when needed.  God used my partnership and friendship with Leroy to accomplish things I could not have done alone. I am convinced now more than ever-everyone needs a Leroy!

The original Barnabas was a Jewish Levite from Cyrus who became a follower of Christ. His name was Joseph, but Acts 4:36 says, “The apostles, in recognition of the gift on his life, renamed him Barnabas, meaning ‘son of encouragement.'” Joseph “Barnabas” must have made a significant impression!

Some people have the gift of encouragement; it comes easily. You may not have the gift of encouragement, but you can be an encourager.

Here are some ways to encourage others:
– Ask questions.
– Be a good listener.
– Look for the good.
– Give people the benefit of the doubt.
– Have a hopeful and positive outlook.
– Live with the joy of the Lord.
– Have people’s back when they are down.

Become a person who believes in others, speaks words of life, and champions others. Be a Leroy/Barnabas today!