Redemptive Gift of Exhorter
The Redemptive Gift of Exhorter comes from Jehovah Shalom
Shalom is a complex word in Hebrew. Jehovah Shalom is the God who gives peace, the God who welcomes us, includes us, encourages us. The God who gives us a sense of wholeness.
In Judges 6, Gideon is fearful. God shows up revealing Himself as Jehovah Shalom, “the Lord is with you, mighty warrior.” God is with him – inclusion. God calls him mighty at a time he is fearful.
It can almost seem like exhorters are simply flattering people at times, yet, God’s motives are obviously pure here. He’s calling Gideon up higher, encouraging him.
This is a wonderful picture of the exhorter gift, the fourth name of Jehovah revealed in scripture, and the fourth redemptive gift listed in Romans 12.
Jamie Oliver is a wonderful example of an exhorter and really expresses the visionary characteristic exhorters have.
Jamie had a vision to see public schools serving healthier food. He came to a small town in West Virginia known for being unhealthy and began his mission there. This geographical area had a high incidence of heart disease, obesity, etcetera.
He runs into much resistance as a Brit in an American southern town, trying to change their eating habits, yet he never breaks relationship, becomes hurtful, or demeaning — even with difficult people.
Instead, Jamie seeks to use connection with others to win them to his vision. He “shalomed” them repeatedly. One of the more humorous demonstrations of this is when one of the cooks at one of the schools would be scowling at him as he showed up to teach and implement his ways of cooking. He would try and get her to smile, saying something nice or funny, however, he never backed down from his vision. He eventually won her over to his side.
What makes an Exhorter tick?
Drive – Connection and influence. An exhorter greets a cashier at the checkout of the grocery store. He makes a comment that brings a smile. He makes a momentary connection. (I’m standing there as a teacher gift thinking, “You only have a moment, what’s the use?” I need to grow in social connection!) Exhorters love even momentary connections with people, no matter if they are friends or strangers.
The characteristics of exhorter flow from this drive:
- “A party looking for a place to happen”
- Instant rapport with strangers — often make good evangelists
- Can argue and disagree without alienating the other person
- Great communicator, has a way with words
Strength – Relationships are typically natural for exhorters and they tend to meet people easily. They instinctively have the keys to people’s hearts.
Weakness – Embracing hard work. The weakness of the exhorter is relying too much on their connecting ability, trying to “charm” their way through life rather than embracing the hard work that all decent accomplishments require.
When the exhorter can combine their ability at connecting with people with diligent hard work, they have the potential to become a world changer! An exhorter can influence and lead many into the Kingdom, as well as inspire change and give vision inside or outside of the church. They just can’t be lazy and “slide” through life without paying a price.
Next post in series Giver