Lately I’ve been spending less time blogging and more time prepping for back to school (this is my 3rd year teaching) and practicing a new hobby God has place on my heart – photography! (Check out my photography Instagram page).
Both have called me into the realm of placing others before myself.
If I can be totally honest, with blogging, it can become self-centered at times. (Yes, I blog with the desire to encourage women to pursue Christ, but I would be dishonest with you if I told you the flesh never steps in as with anything you choose to do for God). You write a post and promote, promote, promote hoping that people will read what you write and be encouraged enough to share it with others. Secretly hoping the numbers will increase.
Anything you do for God can easily become less God-centered and more me-centered at anytime (but that’s another post for another day!).
But with photography, the focus is never on you – literally, the lens is pointed at someone else. It takes the focus off of you and places it on them.
In your photo sessions, you are doing everything you can to make that person feel beautiful and at ease in front of the camera. You shoot and edit with the hopes of wowing them and allowing them to see just how beautiful they really are – even if they can’t see it themselves.
I am in no way a professional photographer (I am amateur at best) and am just picking up a camera for the first time in my life. Everything is a learning experience. Maybe one day this hobby will grow into something bigger – maybe it won’t – either way would be fine with me.
But as of lately, God has placed a desire on my heart to offer free photoshoots to women who are striving to use the gifts God has given them – whether it be singing, blogging, photography, or a business. I just have a desire to support my sisters in Christ!
Our Sisters Need Encouragement
The other day, I had my first official photoshoot with a friend of mine from college – this girl is beyond beautiful and has a beautiful voice to match! I’ve been waiting for the day I hear that she is releasing her first album! And when she does, I know she will blow us all away.
The day after our photoshoot, I texted her some quick edits of her photos and she responded with this,
“The shoot yesterday ignited a fire and a hope in me that I had began to lose over the years… You have no idea how much I appreciate you. Looking through the pictures are bringing tears to my eyes…”
And with that reply, I was reminded…
Our sisters need encouragement!
They need a sister to come along side of them to ignite a fire and a hope that maybe they lost a long time ago.
Every Christian woman has a desire – a gift that can be used to glorify the Lord. Oftentimes, our sisters desires and gifts are lying dormant. Maybe they’re lying dormant due to fear, due to not feeling confident enough, or due to not having the time and resources to get it done.
Whatever the reason may be, our sisters need encouragement.
How to Encourage Your Sisters
Here’s 3 simple ways to encourage your sisters to use their gifts:
Offer your gifts and talents.
The reality is we could get a lot more done if we worked together. Every Christian woman has a gift or talent that she could lend for the glorifying of the Lord, but she oftentimes needs a hand in using those gifts or talents.
As 1 Corinthians 12:12 says, “Just as a body, though one, has many parts, but all its many parts form one body, so it is with Christ.” We are singers, writers, teachers, photographers, missionaries, or whatever you may be – but we are one in the Body of Christ. We need each other to glorify the Lord!
Be willing to offer your gifts and talents to your sisters. If you are a photographer, offer to take photos of your sisters’ events or headshots they can use for their websites and social media pages. If you are a writer, write songs or poems for your sisters who may be struggling to express their words. Whatever you may be, offer it.
And even if you feel like you have nothing to offer, I guarantee you have time – simply ask your sister what she needs help with and she will let you know!
Offer your words of encouragement.
Your words matter. If you admire the work your sister is doing or you think she has a beautiful talent she should be using – tell her that. Don’t just sit back and admire from afar.
As women, we can be our own worst critics. “Gracious words are like a honeycomb, sweetness to the soul and health to the body (Proverbs 16:24)”. And a gracious word of encouragement can be the difference between igniting our fire to use our talents or slowly letting our talents burn out and die.
Encourage your sister to pursue her God-given gifts and talents.
Offer your prayers.
Maybe you’ve offered your services and offered a word of encouragement, but your sister is still allowing her gifts and talents to lie dormant. Or maybe your sister is thriving and currently using the gifts and talents God has given her. Either way pray for her!
Our sisters are fighting battles we may not even know about. Pray for her in private or pray with her to use all that God has given to glorify Him.
Because our sisters need our encouragement.
In what ways have you encouraged your sisters to use their gifts and talents to glorify the Lord? Comment below.
This post is a part of the Sisterhood Series – diving into the importance of Sisterhood for our Christian walk. Check out other posts in the Sisterhood Series, including In Her Storm, Be There, What to Pray for Our Sisters in Christ, and My Fear and Desire for Sisterhood.
For more on Sisterhood, follow my Sisterhood Pinterest Board