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~ Kathy M.

Monday, November 7, 2011

A Pat on the Back: Showing Our Appreciation and Encouraging Others

 Oregon Gifts of Comfort and Joy ~ Kathy Matthews


We all like to be appreciated.  When my step-daughter Shanna came to see us for an overnight visit on Friday, she brought me a bouquet of flowers.  Shanna said, "These are for you, Kathy.  Thank you for all you do for all of us, for our family."  That touched my heart so much that a few days later I am still wimpy about it.  Shanna had given me a pat on the back.


 Oregon Gifts of Comfort and Joy ~ Kathy Matthews


Earlier in the week, somebody that I wouldn't expect to be observing me gave me a compliment on how I was handling a certain situation.  It surprised me, but I appreciated the compliment very much.  I had been given an unexpected pat on the back.


 Oregon Gifts of Comfort and Joy ~ Kathy Matthews


This week, somebody that I do not like at all, but who we are stuck with for a while, gave us two presents.  One gift was something for our home.  It was also an unexpected gesture.  I can't figure out if that gift was given out of appreciation, out of manipulation or out of guilt (for stealing some of our stuff).  

Even though the gift is a beautiful item, I am giving it to our niece just because it bugs me to look at it.  Still, the point is, it could have been given to me as a pat on the back, but I am not appreciative of the gift.  Have you ever done that, given away something because you don't like the person who gave it to you?


 Oregon Gifts of Comfort and Joy ~ Kathy Matthews


On Saturday, I was visiting with my BFF Nancy on the phone.  She was encouraging me to move forward with my gift business.  I had made big plans, announced them publicly, did a little bit and then stalled again.  I am very grateful to how hard she listens to me, digests my issues and then comes back with thoughtful encouragement the next time we talk.

These events got me to thinking about how important it is to encourage others and to show our appreciation for them.  What do those two words actually mean, anyway?  I went to Dictionary.com to find out:

"en·cour·age"

1. to inspire with courage, spirit, or confidence: His coach encouraged him throughout the marathon race to keep on running.
 
2. to stimulate by assistance, approval, etc.: One of the chief duties of a teacher is to encourage students.
 
3.to promote, advance, or foster: Poverty often encourages crime.

"ap·pre·ci·a·tion"


1. gratitude; thankful recognition: They showed their appreciation by giving him a gold watch.
 
2. the act of estimating the qualities of things and giving them their proper value.
3. clear perception or recognition, especially of aesthetic quality: a course in art appreciation.
 
4. an increase or rise in the value of property, goods, etc.
5. critical notice; evaluation; opinion, as of a situation, person, etc.

I like to be a blessing, and I see showing appreciation and being an encouragement as actions.  I try hard to bless others, unless it becomes apparent that I am in an nonreciprocal relationship.  After I have tried hard enough and long enough,  I pick up my toys and go home,  most likely to never return.  Perhaps I need to work harder on forgiveness?  Actually I am getting better at forgiveness and letting things go, but I still think it wise to stay away from hurtful situations.


 Oregon Gifts of Comfort and Joy ~ Kathy Matthews


As I was thinking of what to put in this post last night, the old church song, "Make Me A Servant" came to mind.  I changed the word servant to the word blessing though. 



 Oregon Gifts of Comfort and Joy ~ Kathy Matthews

  
It goes like this:  
Make me a blessing,
Humble and meek ...
Lord let me lift up,
Those who are weak.
Make me a blessing,
Make me a blessing,
Make me a blessing today.



Oregon Gifts of Comfort and Joy ~ Kathy Matthews


So, I just wanted to throw this out here today.  Thank you for being my blog friends; I appreciate you all so much.  I hope that sometimes my words and photos are an inspiration and that you leave here a bit happier because you visited.  Oh, If you like church songs and prayers, you might enjoy by Praise and Worship blog; it is easy to get to by just "CLICKING HERE".

God bless.

~ Kathy M. 



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4 comments:

Hart Johnson said...

Such good stuff to keep in mind. I wish I was more thoughtful, because when I am on the receiving end, it really feels good, and I'd love to make people feel good like that. Sadly, I live in my own little world much of the time. I blame being an only child and latch-key kid. I think I just didn't have the training to think to do it. Hopefully in the blogosphere I am a little better. Those are gorgeous flowers! I love the bright contrast.

Lynn said...

Nice pics and nice gifts! Beautiful flowers.

Arkansas Patti said...

You obviously were never the wicked step mom. Enjoy that pat on the back, I am sure you earned it.
I would never have put those colors together but that is because I lack imagination. They are stunning.

Lisa Ricard Claro said...

You are a blessing. . .just ask all your blog readers! You always offer something positive, Kathy, which makes it a joy to visit you here. Thanks!

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