When you are in the midst of life's storms, it can be difficult to find the strength you need to move forward. And when a friend, loved one, or member of your church faces trial, it is difficult to know how to encourage them. Thankfully, there are many encouraging Bible verses that we can turn to.
Jesus' words can comfort us when we are feeling broken, tired and useless. In addition to writing the New Testament, Paul also fills us up and inspires us to tackle the difficult challenges of the Christian life. Like the Israelites, we can trust God's promises in our worst times.
We have drawn together 23 encouraging Bible verses. Whether you or the people you care about are struggling with temptation, in the midst of a crisis, or just trying to keep going, God can use these verses to uplift you.
We have drawn together 23 encouraging Bible verses
Whether you or the people you care about are struggling with temptation, in the midst of a crisis, or just trying to keep going, God can use these verses to uplift you.
1. It is I who will give you rest (Matthew 11:28-30)
"It is I who will give you rest, all of you are tired and burdensome. There is no need to rejoice or grieve. Take my yoke upon you, because I am low and humble, and you find comfort in your soul. The yoke is easy and the burden is light for me."
For the Jews living in Jesus' day, it was difficult to bear two constant burdens: the law of Rome and the law of Moses. One persecuted him constantly, and the other held him to an impossible standard. Jesus offered easy gambling and light burdens.
While we are not being persecuted by Rome, and as Christians, we are not bound by the covenant between God and Israel, yet Jesus provides comfort for our souls. And it's good because life is tiring.
Between work, school, ministry, bills, relationships, and everything else, it is easy to get overwhelmed by the pressures and expectations that underpin us.
In contrast to what the world expects of us, Jesus does not ask us to work for it. When we go to him and focus on the things that matter to him, we can find comfort in our souls.
While the circumstances of your life may push you physically, emotionally, or mentally, Jesus provides us with easy gambling and a light burden.
2. So we do not lose heart (2 Corinthians 4:16-18)
“Therefore we do not lose heart. Though we are externally ruined, we are renewing ourselves inside and out. Our mild and momentary suffering is attaining eternal glory for us, which takes away all of them. Therefore we do not set our eyes on what is seen, but what is unseen, because what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.”
Illness, injury, and physical challenges make us unaware of how fragile we are. It doesn't matter how broken we feel, God is able to renew us from the inside out. You can't reflect your soul in your body. And if we suffer for Christ — for a moment, a month, or a lifetime — our trials and tribulations will be nothing compared to the glory we will experience when Christ returns and calls us home.
It is not about reducing the weight of your suffering. It is about seeing your pain and your struggles before the triumph of the cross and the promise of eternal life with Jesus.
We can endure every day because God gives us strength, and at the end of this life, He has something greater in store for those who endure.
3. Let perseverance complete its work (James 1:2–4)
"You need to rejoice in the many different types of trials you face because it builds your faith and strengthens your endurance. Make perseverance your guiding light so that your writing can be mature and complete. You are complete."
When you're aching, it's not very encouraging to hear someone say, "What doesn't kill you is what makes you strong." But in the first century, this is exactly what Jacob told the early Christians when they faced the constant threat of persecution.
This was not to diminish the importance of their pain and suffering but to explain what happens when our faith is tested. As you endure, your ability to bear increases. When you go through something difficult, other experiences seem to be comparatively easy.
The more trials you go through, whether they are loss or illness, financial crisis, struggles with sin, or other things, the more you will grow as a follower of Christ.
'This is like the process of refining precious metals, where impurities must be removed multiple times to create the final product,' explains Pastor Francis Chan.
4. Do not worry about anything (Philippians 4:6–7)
"Do not worry over anything, but, in every situation, express your thanks to God, and pray with thanksgiving. In Christ Jesus, God's peace, which transcends all understanding, will protect your hearts and minds."
Anxiety disorders affect about 20 percent of the US population each year. We have a lot to be worried about. The Bible does not tell us not to worry because the things we are concerned about do not matter.
Instead, it provides a solution to the anxiety we are experiencing at the moment: if you are concerned about something, take it to God. If you experience anxiety, pray and ask God to help you deal with it.
Note that God is not just giving us "peace". This is the peace of God. When we bring our concerns to God, we experience the same peace that God has, a peace that "transfers all understanding" and has no meaning in our circumstances. God protects your heart from the worries that Satan wants you to consume.
5. Encourage one another (Hebrews 10:24-25)
“And let us consider how we can motivate each other towards love and good works, not giving up together, because there is a habit of doing something, but encouraging each other and the more You get closer to the day.”
If you are feeling discouraged, do not isolate that drive. And when people around you are disappointed, don't let them fall into loneliness.
Sometimes being alone can restore us, but as part of the body of Christ, we have been called to "bear burdens on one another" (Galatians 6: 2) and lift each other up. We are made for the community, and a healthy church is a source of encouragement, where we love each other and inspire each other to serve others.
Looking for even more encouraging Bible verses to uplift the people around you? Check out our blog post: To Turn to the Scriptures in Tough Times.
6. I will not fear evil, for you are with me (Psalm 23)
“The Lord is my shepherd, I have nothing.
He lays me in green pastures,
He takes me to the calm waters,
He refreshes my soul.
He takes me to the right path
For the sake of his name.
Even if I walk
Through the darkest valley,
I will fear no evil,
Because you are with me;
Your stick and your staff,
They comforted me.
You prepare a table in front of me
In the presence of my enemies.
You anoint my head with oil;
My cup was overflowed.
Surely your good and love will follow me
All the days of my life,
My dwelling place will be the House of the Lord.
The lead of a shepherd protects and takes care of the sheep. As our shepherd, God leads us to good things, and when He is with us (which always is), we should not be afraid of anything.
7. The world has not overtaken me (John 16:33)
“I have said these things to you, so that you may find peace in me. In this world, you will have trouble. But hold your heart! I have overcome the world.”
Before Jesus is imprisoned and crucified, he tells his disciples what will happen in the coming days, when he will no longer be with them. They were warned about the terrible things that might happen to them, but also by a great gift, the Holy Spirit, which would dwell within those who believed in him. The most important thing he did was to encourage his disciples to continue trusting in him and to stay with him (John 15:4).
In Jesus, we can enjoy the gift of peace, knowing that no matter what happens in life, we have someone on our side who has overcome the world and conquered death!
8. Your God cares for you (1 Peter 5:7)
"All your anxiety falls on him because he loves you."
God cares about your problems even though they are small and insignificant. As we often think, God created the universe for us to live comfortably so that we may enjoy peace of mind. He wants you to bring him your worries, just as he calls us to bear one another's burdens (Galatians 6:2). And while we may feel like we can't cope with our failures or challenges, God is infinitely capable of swallowing them up.
In this verse, God says, "Why are you interfering with me?" He replies, "I created you."
9. One way out will be provided by the Lord (1 Corinthians 10:13)
"You are not tempted in a way that goes beyond what mankind is tempted with. God is faithful; he does not permit any temptation greater than what that person can handle. However, when you are tempted, he also provides an escape road for you to endure that temptation."
As a result of shame, we tend to feel alone in our suffering. According to Paul, in Corinth, a city where depravity was common, the temptation is part of human nature.
In addition, he assured them that temptations would never be too overwhelming, and there would always be a way out.
During times when you're tempted to sin, it seems like everything is pointing toward disaster. But there is always a way out, no matter how challenging or difficult. Look for it; you can overcome the temptation you're facing.
10. I have sufficient grace for you (2 Corinthians 12:9–10)
"I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses so that Christ's power is shed on me. I delight in hardship, persecution, and insult, so that I might be strengthened by Christ."
God demonstrates his strength throughout Scripture when situations seem most hopeless. In Judges 7, when Gideon brought an army to fight the Midianites, God told him that it had too many men, so no one would credit the victory to God, rather they would take credit for it themselves. God whittled their army down from 32,000 to 300 just by following certain steps. They won handily, giving all glory to Him.
The greatest moments for Jesus to show off his power are when we are least capable of relying on ourselves. Every moment of weakness is an opportunity for Christ to show off his power.
11. He provides me all the strength I need (Philippians 4:12-13)
"It is through him who gives me strength that I know what it is to be in need or I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned how to be content no matter what situation I am in if I am well fed or hungry if I live in plenty or want."
A few chapters after Paul urges the Philippians to ignore anxiety, he has them understand that this peace will guard their hearts against anxiety. He says that bringing your worries to God will empower you to be content no matter what your circumstances are.
However, in difficult times, we have to rely on God and not our own strength to be content. Thankfully, God can provide us the strength we need through prayer.
12. If you are being tempted, he can help you (Hebrews 2:18)
"Due to his suffering when tempted, he can offer help to others tempted."
The physicality of Jesus' human nature is often highlighted in Scripture. He slept (Matthew 8:24). (John 11:35) He wept. During the meal, he ate (Mark 14:18). It is easy to overlook the fact that Jesus too went through temptation. Even though Jesus was the only perfect human, he was "fully human in every way" (Hebrews 2:17), and "those tempted in every way were also led to repentance" (Hebrews 4:15).
Though Jesus was never tempted, he comprehends our weaknesses based on his experiences and is, therefore, able to help us, when we are struggling.
13. Be courageous and strong (Joshua 1:9)
"I commanded you to be bold and courageous, resist fear and discouragement, for the Lord your God is walking beside you."
Israel had a huge gap during Moses' lifetime. How could anyone fill Moses' shoes? Joshua was likely discouraged and ill-prepared. So God redirected him to Deuteronomy 31:6.
Because we are God's temple, His Spirit dwells within us, so the experiences of the Israelites in ancient times still ring true for us today. Consequently, we can have strength and courage.
14. Since I know your plans (Jeremiah 29:11)
"As God explained, "I know the plans I have for you, plans that will prosper you and not harm you, plans that will give you hope and a future."
Despite its popularity, this poem is often found on the Christian trade due to its encouraging message. However, before we stick to these words, it is important to consider their origin.
Jeremiah gave these words to the Israelites at a time when the exile of Babylon had just happened when the Jewish people were forced to live among the Babylonians for 70 years. This period ended with the fulfillment of God's Word to the people.
The promise of Revelation 21:1–4 is not that your troubles will end soon and God will make you successful and happy. It is a promise that God is not the cause of our pain and that in the end, God's plan will be for our good.
15. The compassion of God never fails (Lamentations 3:22-23)
"We are not consumed by God's love because of His great love.
Compassion never fails to move him.
They are new each morning;
Your faithfulness is outstanding."
It is not always easy to see God's compassion and mercy when we are discouraged, but God is faithful. His love surrounds us and he is deeply concerned for our well-being. He constantly shows his love to us.
16. I will strengthen and help you (Isaiah 41:10)
"You need not fear for I am with you.
Be not afraid, for I am your God.
I will support you and strengthen you;
With my righteous hand, you will be upheld."
God wants you to remember that he is always with you, so you don't have to fear those challenges. If the challenge seems too difficult for you, it probably is. However, God can empower you and help you overcome the obstacles you face.
17. It is God who comforts us so that we can comfort others (2 Corinthians 1:3-4)
"It is God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the compassionate Father, and the Comforter that comforted us in all our troubles so that we could comfort others as he comforted us."
In a similar manner, God's love for us comforts us when we suffer from discouragement or anxiety. As His vessels, we can comfort others in the same way.
18. Let God provide for your needs (Matthew 6:27)
"If you worry, who among you adds a second to their lives?"
Matthew 6:26-35 portrays Jesus asking his listeners to marvel at the beauty and simplicity of creation around them. Even though sparrows die quickly and flowers quickly wither, God clothes all flowers and feeds them (Matthew 6:26-35).
He wasn't downplaying what they were worried about - he was reminding them (and us today) that worrying doesn't change anything but trusting that God is going to provide for them. The evidence of that can be seen in everything around us.
19. My God will provide for all your needs (Philippians 4:19)
"In his glory in Christ Jesus, my God will meet all your needs."
While in ministry, Paul was shipwrecked multiple times, beaten to within an inch of death, and constantly at risk of death. He also saw poverty and suffered hunger, which caused him to promise God would meet his needs-and ours too.
20. I am protected and protected by you (Psalm 119:114, 115)
"In your arms, I find refuge and protection.
I have put my faith in your word.
Keep away from me, you evildoers!
To obey the commands of my God!”
If you need comfort and safety, says the psalmist, you can run to God, your great protector. Like a mighty fortress or an impenetrable shield, God can absorb the blows life deals you, and keep you from being overwhelmed.
Taking God at his word and leaning on his strength is a wise decision.
21. The Lord is my help (Psalm 121)
"When I look at the mountains—
Where is my help coming from?
I receive my strength from the Lord.
The Creator of heaven and earth.
He won't allow your foot to slip—
Those who watch over you will not slumber;
The one who keeps watch over Israel.
Will not slumber nor sleep.
You are in the Lord's hands-
At your right hand is the Lord, your shade;
Sunlight will not harm you in the daytime.
The moon is not visible at night.
The Lord will protect you from all harm.
He will protect your life;
God will watch over your comings and goings.
As of now and forevermore."
There is never a time when God doesn't know exactly how your life is going. He will always be there for you, ready to assist you. Anything you need, no matter how insignificant, you simply have to ask and he will do it.
22. Your paths will be straightened out (Proverbs 3:5–6)
"The Lord is your hope in all of life.
And do not rely on your understanding;
Submit to him in all your ways.
And he will straighten your paths."
It can be frustrating when you don't understand why something happened to you or someone you love. Although the Bible doesn't explain everything, it tells us what to do when we don't understand something: trust.
Although not everything makes sense, even when we think it does, it is possible to miss what is going on because our understanding is human and fallible. However, if we place our trust in God's power, wisdom, and authority, we will never get stuck in the same situation.
23. You are more valuable than many sparrows (Luke 12:6-7)
"The hairs of your head are all numbered. We are not worth less than the cost of five sparrows. Even though they cost two pennies, God does not forget any of them. Don't fear; you are worth more than that."
Sparrows had so little value in their lives that each was worth less than a penny. The parallel passage of Matthew's gospel (Matthew 10: 29) tells us that two were sold for a penny, and therefore Luke is here to reveal that if you bought four, one was thrown away for free. But God knows every sparrow, no matter how little they are for humans.
Then you're worth more than most of them.
Jesus is stressing that God knows you in such an intimate manner that no one can harm a hair on your head without him knowing. You are so valuable to God that he has taken the time to become intimately familiar with every detail about you.
Bible verses to encourage
The Bible is full of encouragement if you know where to look. Ask any Christian recommended passages, and we're sure you'll find many more than we've listed here. Whether you are looking for encouragement for yourself or someone you care about, these scriptures are worth memorizing.
Sharing Encouragement Bible Verses
As a church leader, it can be challenging to know and engage with everyone in your congregation. But making your people feel seen and heard, especially when they are going through challenging times, is so important. That way, you can send them supportive bible verses, such as these.
But how do you stay connected to your community? There are great methods to help you reach, grow, and keep your church community. For example, a platform like Pushpay allows you to communicate with your church community directly on their phones and guides them into deeper engagement.
Your people will receive encouragement and support from these tools even when they're not at church on Sundays. Learn more about these tools below.