The couple’s example of love and compassion was an encouragement to me. They were in their early forties and had three children of their own when the Lord led them to take in four foster children, all siblings less than 4 years old. A month later, the woman found out she was pregnant!

Over the next few years, with their house bulging and their budget straining, they discovered that their situation was an encouragement to the other families in their church who could look at them and say, “And we think we have problems!” They were a vivid example of joyfully following Christ’s leading, even when it’s difficult.

Paul commended the Christians in Thessalonica for following the Lord, even though they suffered hardship. And their joy from the Holy Spirit enabled them to become “examples to all in Macedonia and Achaia who believe” (1 Th. 1:7).

What I remember most about the couple with all those young children is their joy. They sometimes shook their heads in wonder at God’s leading, but they always had a smile that said, “We would do it all again.”

Are you facing difficult, faith-stretching circumstances today? Your joyful obedience to God can be an encouraging example to others.