I was pondering an unfinished letter on my computer the other day. It was a letter written to an 87 year old man. He was a preacher of the gospel. I had found his tapes by accident in a "junk box" and took them home and listened to them. There were over 100 of them! They revolutionized my life and gave me spiritual food at a time when I was really, really hungry!
I had started this letter a year ago. Over the next couple of months, I had worked on it some, taking the time to say just the right thing in just the right way. I just looked at it again last Saturday, intending to finish and mail it on Monday. You see, I knew he was very sick, almost to the point of death and I wanted him to know how much he had blessed my life.
Monday morning I awoke to the news that he had passed away on Sunday.
There it was! He had died and I could not tell him how much he had meant to me because I had procrasinated and been worried about grammar and syntax. How ridiculous! Perhaps in his last days on earth, I could have cheered him if only for a minute, but my chance is gone!
Then today, I received an email devotion that I look at everyday.
"About that time she became sick and died. The room was filled with widows who were weeping and showing him the coats and other garments Dorcas had made for them." Acts 9:37,39 A good many people have to die--to be appreciated. They go through the world living quietly, devoted to the interests of those who are dear to them, seeking no recognition. They are merely commonplace people, and so are allowed to love and serve without appreciation.But one day they are missed from their accustomed place--their work on earth is done--and they are gone! Then the empty place reveals the value of the blessing they have been. In their absence, people learn for the first time--the value of the services they had been accustomed to receive from them.
I know how much I like it when someone appreciates a meal I make or a favor I do for them. And I had to stop and ask myself, am I always appreciative when people do things for me? Do I tell people regularly how much they mean to me? Do I show them how much they mean to me? Do I take the "normal, everyday kindnesses" for granted?
I have to admit, I am behind on some "thank you's." There was the month of little surprises for Pastor's Appreciation. I made a big card, but it never made it to church--yet. Then there was the two weeks I was in bed recovering from pneumonia. Every night a meal miracuously appeared at our house until I was well enough to make it myself. Once or twice, there were little women skittering all over my house too, with brooms, mops, and cleaning cloths busily cleaning my house because just walking up the stairs required me to need an oxygen tank. I'm sure there are other things too that I have now forgotten or taken for granted.
So, here it is!
My New Year's Resolution (by the grace of God) #1
-I will take time regularly to be thankful for all the wonderful people God has put in my life. I will then tell them that I am thankful for them and why. I will take notice of the "little" things" that people do for me and let them know I noticed. I don't want to wake up one morning and find that my chance to let them know what a blessing they are to me is gone.
Guess I had better hit the after Christmas sale and see if Thank you cards are on clearance too! Considering who I have for friends, I'm going to need a truck load of them!