1 Thessalonians 5:18 ‘In everything give thanks, for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.’
Although it is Thanksgiving season in Canada, my own season of thankfulness began on the balcony of Por do Sol in Portugal. On Sunday morning with the two of us gathered over coffee, we spent a lot of time counting our blessings. We discussed people very specifically regarding the ways that they have blessed our lives. We enumerated how we are richer for having them touch us in some way in the past or currently. We were so uplifted by speaking good things about these people, and there wasn’t a lull. We have been so blessed by so many. Period. Names, circumstances, events all poured from us as we spoke and rejoiced. It was a wonderful way to spend worship time in thankfulness.
Once we completed this time together, we decided to simply write to every person that came to mind and tell them how we are thankful for them. Thus, the beginning of our ‘thankfulness project’. Once we began formalizing our thoughts on cards for people, we realize how easy this activity has become. It is not a strain to sincerely thank a person for a number of items.
I realize that this activity is also a necessity that is sorely lacking in the workplace. How desperate everyone is to hear words of kindness, encouragement and thanks. Everyone is buffeted by the world and its negativity. It is so rare to simply stop and sincerely thank someone for doing something or for simply ‘being them’.
On a recent trip, I began to wonder, ‘what if we could pay it forward and simply start saying some small words of encouragement to an unsuspecting person?’ Perhaps you have been remiss in speaking to your child and telling them some positive things that you appreciate about them? Have you said thank you to your partner for working hard recently? Have you thanked your neighbour for contributing to your peace of mind on the street? (This is now on my list as I just thought about it). Taking it a step further, what if you asked someone you recently thanked to simply do the same in kind, to others?
This will cost us nothing, but considering other people and the positive ways in which they impact our lives and simply telling them. Couldn’t this make a difference in our homes, our work, our churches, in LIFE? It brings me such joy to simply think about someone and then write my feelings about them. If they happen to open the card in my presence, then their surprise/smile and unsuspecting pleasure in reading words of affirmation that are directed to them is a wonder to behold. It is not a selfish pleasure, but to see another person being built up by sincere words of thanks reaffirms in my mind that as human beings versus human doings we all need to hear a ‘word fitly spoken’. It might impact someone today, so please join the project and give it a try?
Proverbs 25:11 ‘A word fitly spoken is like apples of gold in silver settings.’