We all have feelings of inadequacy. That niggling doubt that we’ll never be good enough. We have our own personal companion within our head, always there to let us know when we did something stupid, or embarassing, or when we mess up somehow. And he’s always there to berate us about it.
Never is he there to encourage or uplift us. Rarely do we actually feel worthy of someone’s praise or respect. We don’t feel worthy of anything. In fact, most of the time, we feel as though we could never do anything of value.
But that is not true.
Edification literally means “the instruction or improvement of a person morally or intellectually”. Edification is when someone walks up to you and compliments your hair, or congratulates you on something you accomplished, or even when someone praises you for something you did. Edification uplifts and encourages those around us, and even ourselves when given to us. But it’s also something sorely lacking in this world.
Too often we’re busy with our own lives in our own worlds and don’t even notice those around us. We don’t see when someone is hurting, alone, or in need of a kind word. No one notices those things these days. Or if they do they don’t have the courage to edify that person.
But imagine if we did have that courage. Imagine if you walked up to a random person in Walmart today and complimented them about something. Maybe you liked their clothes, or the way they did their hair, or even the bright smile on their face. Whatever it may be, by you taking that terrifying first step, it might just be what that person needed to uplift and edify them.
Now, I know I started out talking about our own doubts and insecurities, and now I’m talking all about other’s. So let’s turn the table back around. Imagine now that you’re that person in Walmart needing the word of encouragement. You’ve had a rotten day, you’re feeling depressed, and all you want to do is go home and hit the couch.
But then, out of nowhere, someone walks up to you and gives you a compliment. It may not be something big, just a simple “love that t-shirt”, or “you’ve got pretty hair”. But that simple compliment was all you needed right then to uplift you enough to see you back home. And maybe even when you get home you’ll no longer feel so crummy. Suddenly you felt edified.
Edification isn’t just something we can give or receive, however. It’s something that we can tell ourselves as well. Self-edification.
Remember those doubts and insecurities that were plaguing you at the beginning? What if there was no one around to give you that kind word of encouragement you so desperately needed? What if the only one around was yourself?
To edify yourself, you have to build yourself up. Not with false pretenses or proud mannerisms but humbly and in the sight of the Lord. Ask God to show you ways you have been fruitful lately.
Have you read your Bible? You’re wise. Have you marked something off your to-do list? You’re productive. Have you tidied your living space? You’re diligent.
You don’t have to do some mighty deed in order to feel good about yourself. Sometimes it’s in the little things that we can find the most joy. You don’t have to conquer your whole to-do list at once – that will only bring back those feelings of unworthiness. Take it one small task at a time, building yourself up after each one, and soon not only will you have completed every item, but you will also feel much better after doing so.
Remember the way Jesus gave kind words to all those around Him? He edified the poor and broken people in order to build them back up, not crash them back down. He calls us blessed, redeemed, worthy, loved. But most of all, we are His.
There is nothing more beautiful to be.
“Exhort one another daily, while it is called “Today,” lest any of you be hardened through the deceitfulness of sin.” Hebrews 3:13a
“Let no corrupt word proceed out of your mouth, but what is good for necessary edification, that it may impart grace to the hearers.” Ephesians 4:29
“Therefore comfort each other and edify one another, just as you also are doing.” 1 Thessalonians 5:11
Meet the Writer
Hi there! My name is Allyson Jamison and I am a writer with a passion to serve Christ! Though fiction is my first love, I have lately found enjoyment in nonfiction as well and love using my talents for the Lord. When not scribbling furiously away with pen and paper or typing at the computer as I’m more often to do, I can be found in a quiet corner lost in the pages of a book, cuddling with my dog, or cooking up some scheme of adventure that will result in mischief and fun. Always while drinking a cup of tea.