Don’t just pretend to love others. Really love them. Hate what is wrong. Hold tightly to what is good. Love each other with genuine affection, and take delight in honoring each other.Romans 12:9-10
Did you ever go to a summer camp as a kid? Not me. I wasn’t really into that sort of thing. However, my two kids love it. A couple years ago, they taught me a great lesson about the value of simple gratitude. This particular year, they were obsessed with the idea of getting coffee every morning from the camp canteen. You read that right. This camp had a coffee shop. Not exactly “roughing it” out in the woods. One of my daughters had spent all her money on the first day and, therefore, called on day two looking for more. On the third day, she called again because she was out of money. Apparently there was a coffee party and she picked up the tab. On day four she called, with another story about where her money had gone. Finally, on day five I was finished with this new issue. They only had one more day of camp. I had the idea of camp being a place where they enjoyed the outdoors and learned new skills, not become addicted to caffeine. When I picked up the phone on day five, I expected another interesting story about where her money had gone and more promises of future chores for an advance in her allowance. However, all she said was, “I love you.” I wish I could tell her I had a better response but all I said was, “Yeah. I love you too. How much do you need?” She said, “I don’t need any money. I still have some from our last call. I just wanted to say thank you for being so willing to help and I love you very much.” Needless to say I was speechless.
That simple call of gratitude melted away my frustration and made my day. I didn’t realize how badly I needed to hear that until she said it. How about you? Do you find yourself giving and giving and needing to hear a simple “I appreciate you” from time to time? Do you think there is anyone around you who feels the same? Today, instead of waiting to be appreciated, why go first in appreciating others. One of the fastest ways I know to being encouraged is to encourage others. Lifting up others lifts you up as well. Give it a try and see what happens.
- I will show gratitude every where I can.
- I will look for ways to show sincere gratitude.
- I will give what I am looking for.
“Thank you, God, for the opportunity to show love to others. Help me spread your hope today.”