“Life would be much more exciting if each of us left a trail of ‘little sparks of appreciation’ along our way.”
David Dunn, author of Try Giving Yourself Away
It’s so simple to show appreciation. Look at all the people you come in contact with in a day. They are all human beings like you with problems, sorrows, joys, frustrations. You have no idea the obstacles and challenges they may be facing every day. What a difference it makes to simply be appreciative and try to connect with another real live person. Here is one example: I was in a neighborhood pharmacy and it seems they are frequently behind. They take too long to fill my prescription, and I always have something better to do than stand in line waiting for my Lipitor. One day there seemed to be an unusually long wait. But for some reason, I was prompted to say these simple words to the young woman who was doing her best to do her job and remain cheerful. I said something like “It looks like you could use some help back there. Anyway, I appreciate your service and your friendly smile in the middle of all of this frustration.” or something like that. I thought she might cry. She said, “that’s the nicest thing anyone has ever said to me since I’ve been working here.” She went on to tell me about her mother who was sick who she was trying to care for along with her own little ones. It made me realize that just one simple comment like that can totally change someone’s day. And it’s so easy to do. Try it. Being frustrated or mad doesn’t usually make things go any better, but one little spark of appreciation to another human being can make all the difference in the world.
“Gently encourage the stragglers, and reach out for the exhausted, pulling them to their feet. Be patient with each person, attentive to individual needs. And be careful that when you get on each other’s nerves you don’t snap at each other. Look for the best in each other and always do your best to bring it out.”
1 Thessalonians 5:14-15 (The Message)