Therefore encourage one another and build one another up, just as you are doing.” 1 Thessalonians 5:11.
As a sophomore, my time at Harding has been characterized by encouragement from a variety of fronts. I have received encouragement from my professors in the way that they are eager to invite me in and offer support. I have been encouraged by the members of my club in the way that they are willing to make me a part of something bigger than myself. I have been loved by the community around me in a way that has shaped my life so that it is glorifying to God. In 1 Thessalonians 5:11, Paul writes to a supportive church community in Thessalonica, asking them to continue in their encouragement of one another. At Harding, I believe our environment is one that seeks to build others up, but like the church in Thessalonica, we can benefit from a reminder to be intentional in such behavior.
Lectureship is a gift we are given every year to grow, to learn and to improve ourselves through the wisdom of people who have walked faithfully with the Lord. Some of those people are Harding students with whom we interact daily. Even more specifically, some of those students are women. The young women scheduled to speak at the Fall 2019 Lectureship are ones who have allowed God to work through their lives and are fully aware of how amazing his works are. They have been given an opportunity to share a small fraction of how glorious our heavenly Father is, and we as the Harding community have been given the opportunity to support these women by attending their lectures.
As a woman who wants to spend her life doing ministry, I know how important it is to be supported by the people around me. We can’t fully understand others’ perspectives, but if we are willing to love, support and hold each other accountable through our differences, then we have achieved true Gospel community.
If you love these women and say that you support them, please go listen to what they have to say. Having people fill the seats during their lectures is not nearly as important as hearing what the Lord is going to say through them, but we can’t benefit from what they have to say if we don’t first make an effort to attend. Harding students do a good job of supporting each other across most facets of campus life, so why wouldn’t that encouragement extend to the women taking a leap of faith to walk in obedience with our Father?
I encourage you to take advantage of Lectureship as a whole, but I especially encourage you to make an effort to hear from the women of Harding University. I know their words will be challenging and fruitful, and I would like to see our campus community grow together in a way that more accurately reflects the life of the early church, continuing to “encourage one another and build one another up, just as you are doing.”