7 Ways Christian Encouragement and Secular Encouragement Look Very Different

By Natasha Crain

As much as I love Facebook, I’ve become jaded lately by the onslaught of memes offering simplified life wisdom. One in particular caught my eye this week. I don’t want to criticize the work of a specific site or person, so I’m not going to post the original photo here. It was from one of many sites devoted to “positive thinking” and featured the following advice:

Tell Yourself:

  • Everything will work out.
  • Things will get better.
  • You are worthy of great things.
  • The time is now.
  • This too shall pass.
  • You can be who you really are.
  • You can do this.

At first glance, this looks like a simple list of encouraging (though cliché) statements. For some reason, however, I was struck by how a list of encouraging statements would look totally different if written from a Christian worldview. This list provides an excellent conversation starter for your kids and offers a great opportunity to discuss the difference between secular and Christian viewpoints in everyday living.

For each statement above, ask 1) what people typically mean when they say it and 2) how that matches or does not match what the Bible tells us. (You can tailor these explanations to any age; for younger kids, simply explain that people do make the statement, describe what it means, and discuss how that compares to what the Bible would say.)

The bottom line is that secular encouragement and Christian encouragement are rooted in vastly different worldviews.

I’ve provided a Christian “translation” for each statement and some key talking points below…

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7 Ways Christian Encouragement and Secular Encouragement Look Very Different