Joseph, a Levite from Cyprus, whom the apostles called Barnabas (which means Son of Encouragement), sold a field he owned and brought the money and put it at the apostles’ feet.
People have lots of nicknames. A lot have funny stories behind them while some are descriptive of a person’s personality. Barnabas could not have been called a more appropriate nickname.
Barnabas was the type of person who saw good in everyone and wanted to encourage them. He took Paul under his wing while the rest of the Christians were still scared of him because of putting so many to death prior to his conversion.
Later it was Barnabas who wouldn’t give up on Mark even though he had deserted him and Paul on a previous journey. Paul wouldn’t take Mark again and Barnabas wouldn’t give up on him. In the end Paul recognized Mark’s value – surely because Barnabas continued to encourage him – and asked the Mark come to him as he sat in prison.
We all need a Barnabas in our life. People with the gift of encouragement will keep our spirits up even when nothing seems to go right. They will stick by us when everyone else has lost hope and given up.
Thank God for the Barnabas’s in our lives because He places them there to lift us up just when we need it most.