Lessons on Encouragement from Kevin Durant


photo from espn.com

Kevin Durant is one of the two best basketball players in the entire world, and yesterday he won his first MVP award. He gave a heartfelt speech that including naming his mom as the real MVP for the job she did raising him as a young single mom. Durant also spent time thanking each one of his teammates for the part they have played in making him into the player and man he is. It was very moving.

During his speech, he thanked two of his teammates, Caron Butler and Kendrick Perkins, for encouragement they gave him in moments that he didn’t believe in himself. You can view those two portions here and here. This was someone at the top of his profession in need of people to believe in him and call out the greatness they saw in him.

I want to challenge you to think for a minute about people in your life. Some of them, especially those that are young, need you to call things out of them by seeing their gifts when they cannot see them. They need you to love them through their failures. They need you to believe that they are ok, even when they cannot believe it.

In the church(and especially in youth ministry), this should be happening all the time. We should be praying for each other and calling out the goodness and beauty of the Holy Spirit within each follower of Jesus. The church will be a different place if we look for and encourage the spiritual gifts found in Scripture. 

I’ll leave you with a list of gifts and encourage you to read through them slowly and ask God to bring people to mind that you need to encourage.

  • Romans 12: exhortation, giving, leadership, mercy, prophecy, service, teaching 
  • 1 Corinthians 12: administration, apostle, discernment, faith, healing, helps, knowledge, miracles, prophecy, teaching, tongues, tongues interpretation, wisdom
  • Ephesians 4: apostle, evangelism, pastor, prophecy, teaching

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