Be Encouraging: Influence Your Group with GodlinessThe Apostle Paul encouraged believers with the truth that had been revealed to him by God, but he also encouraged them with his own example of how that truth is lived out through a godly life (see: 2 Corinthians 4:1-15; 1 Thessalonians 2:10-12). Paul preached and practiced what he believed. Several times in Scripture, Paul holds up his own life to others as an example to follow and emulate. As a follower of Christ and a leader, your goal should be no different— that your life would be an example to others. As the leader of your group, you have the opportunity to encourage your moms to believe God and to be faithful.The biblical idea of encouragement is typically represented by the Greek verb parakaleo . It is a compound of two Greek words— para, alongside; and kaleo, to call. Literally it means to “call alongside,” but can be translated as encourage, exhort, or comfort. The encourager is one who comes alongside another to help as they walk with Christ. Being that kind of encourager is a key part of your role as a Mom Heart group leader—to come alongside each mom in your group and encourage them in their life with Christ. One of the greatest gifts you will give to your group is godly, biblical encouragement.You may not feel qualified or gifted enough to think that you could be a godly encourager like Paul, but remember that you have the same Holy Spirit that Paul did. If God calls you to a ministry, He will equip and empower you by His Spirit to do it (see: Philippians 4:12-13; 2 Peter 1:2-11). You can expect spiritual battles tempting you to feel discouraged, inadequate, or afraid, but the Spirit of God will come alongside you to encourage you, to help you find courage through Christ. Paul’s pastoral protégé, Timothy, apparently was timid and lacked courage. In his very last letter, Paul encouraged Timothy with these words: “God did not give you a spirit of timidity, but a spirit of power, of love, and of self-discipline” (2 Timothy 1:7). The same Spirit is at work in your life. Being a godly encourager is not about what you can do, but what the Spirit can do through you.Excerpt from Taking Motherhood to Hearts.