Monday, August 8, 2011

Goal #59 COMPLETE: Encouragement

More progress on my Project 101 in 1001 list. Read about my journey here.

Goal #59: Send hand-written notes of encouragement to five friends/family members. COMPLETE 

Using words (written or spoken) to encourage another has got to be the second-most perfect way to use the git of language. The first way being to use words as an act of worship, prayer or praise to God. There is just nothing quite like words of encouragement and praise to bless the person receiving them, which I think is interesting since Jesus said the greatest commandments are to "love God, love others." Should it come as any surprise then that the greatest way to use words is also to "love God, love others"?

For me at least, there is something extra special about hand-written, snail-mailed words of encouragement, which is why I wanted to include this goal on my list. Through this goal, I had the joy of using the gift of words to (hopefully) encourage some special, wonderful women in my life. 

Honestly, my negative/positive word ratio needs some major adjustment. It's so easy for me to use words to complain, argue and express the negative, but I know that is not what words were created for (James 3:9-10). And it really doesn't do me or the person listening to me much good. How much better to use words to encourage and to create a joyful atmosphere? This takes practice and discipline though doesn't it? It certainly doesn't come naturally (for me anyways). Hopefully this goal and what I realized about words as I completed it is a small step in the right direction.

What about you? When was the last time you used words to encourage another? Or, when was the last time your received a personal word of encouragement that really blessed your heart?

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