The Power of Words and a Grateful Heart

I was reading a book called Heart to Heart Stories of Friendship compiled and edited by Joe L. Wheeler and one thing that stood out to me in these stories of friendship is the power of words. You can use your words to kill a friend in a matter of seconds or you can use your words to save a life, but it’s up to you. One story tells of a grouch who always seemed to be in the worst of moods, never smiled, was disliked by all, and cussing seemed to be his only language, but he was also the most faithful at his job. After eight long years of laboring day and night, someone finally told him that he was appreciated for his faithful hard work and guess what happened? The grouchy man was transformed completely; began working harder than before, smiled at everyone, moved his way up to top position in his line of business, and became a much loved coworker.

I was thinking about this and other stories I had read and began to think how I might be able to use my own words to change lives, as well, particularly through words of affirmation. I am just not one to affirm people very often. Sarcasm and criticism is often my language and while that is fine for certain situations and for certain people, speaking words of affirmation to someone is going to make a far greater difference for the better than being sarcastic. While sarcasm can be funny, it can also be harmful, but that is getting off subject (I can talk about sarcasm and criticism another time if you wish). Sometimes I will even be thinking about how much I appreciate someone and the kindness they showed me, yet never breathe a word of appreciation to that person. I guess I just think they can read my thoughts or something, but they can’t (of which I am truly thankful), but that also means that I need to use my words if I want someone to know how much I appreciate them.
I was reminded of one person in particular who recently blessed me in a unique way, yet because I never used my words to tell him, he will probably never know how truly thankful and blessed I was. So here is a message that I wish he could read, yet maybe you who are reading this will be inspired to thank someone in your own life before it is too late.

Doug,
There is a verse in the Bible that says, “Let brotherly love continue. Do not neglect to show hospitality to strangers, for thereby some have entertained angels unawares.” Now I would not call myself an angel, in fact, I am far from it, but I would say you did a pretty good job of carrying out the command in this verse even though you probably have never even heard it before. ;) I was getting pretty lonely on that Island where you and your crew had been working. I wasn’t looking for a friend when I walked up to the orange fence that Sunday, but you saw me and talked to me and listened to me and didn’t make me feel like I needed to hurry away or stop talking. You seemed to genuinely care even though I was only another curious random girl. Although I didn’t talk to you that long, you were a friend during that short conversation. I never expected to see you again after that and it would have been ok if I hadn’t because you had brightened my soul that day, being a friend to me for all of about 10 or 20 minutes. But we did end up crossing paths again several times and each time you were a friend. Now I am back in Minnesota and this time we probably really will never cross paths again unless it be in heaven, but thanks for being willing to be a friend to me while I was on that Island, particularly that Sunday. You quickly found out that I am a slightly crazy girl, but not even that stopped you from being a friend and because of that I will forever remember you. Thanks for being a friend to a stranger and a crazy one at that! I hope you know that you made a difference in my life.

 

                                                                        Sincerely a grateful heart,
                                                                                                   Hannah

Don't wait till its too late to show love to another!

 

Comments

  1. Wow, thanks for this! Thanks for a needed reminder!

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    1. You're very welcome, Taylor! I write posts like this simply because I need the reminder too.

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  2. Great memory! I think the Lord used you to show Doug the love of God.
    Thinking about sarcasm and criticism, I don't think that is your language! :)
    I think a lot of times we slip into that when we are uncomfortable or don't know what to say, but your words are a reminder that we should be careful about what we say.
    Like the bible says, "I tell you, on the day of judgment people will give account for every careless word they speak," Matt. 12:36

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