In the rush of moving on to the next thing on my schedule, or being preoccupied with my thoughts, I can’t believe how easy it is for me to actually forget to take time and say two little words.
In the busyness of my life, I often underestimate the power of saying thank you to acknowledge someone for their kindness, service, or thoughtfulness.
Two simple, little words that can make a person’s day. It can change an attitude from negative to positive. In an often thankless job, it makes a person feel appreciated for what they do. It can encourage a discouraged heart. It sets an example that hopefully will be passed on to others. You and I know how it feels when we are thanked for even the smallest thing we’ve done or said. And yet, so often, I miss the moment when thank you can impact a life.
Don’t limit the ways to express your thanks to a family member, a child, a friend, or even a stranger. It can be verbal, in a note, a phone call, a text, an email, or perhaps even a small gift. And don’t forget that a smile and eye contact speaks volumes when thanking them in person.
I can’t help but recall the story of the ten lepers who had been healed by Jesus (Luke 17:11-16). Only one of them stopped, turned around, and went back to thank Jesus for what He had done. Wow! It makes me wonder how many other people that Jesus healed had stopped to even whisper “thank you” in His ear before they went on their way.
When was the last time I stopped, turned around, and went back to thank someone in the busyness of my day? The story of that one leper who took the time to stop and say thank you reminded me of my own forgetfulness to do the same thing.
I thought of this vivid word picture from scripture the other day at the grocery store. I was in the parking lot with a loaded cart in the Arizona heat. I was so ready to get the bags in the car and turn the air conditioner on to cool off. Then I noticed a young employee limping across the parking lot as he gathered carts to return to the store. His shirt was wet with sweat.
It suddenly became a matter of my heart, not the heat I was trying to escape.
I spotted a cart two cars from mine and saw that he was walking over to get it. I quickly pushed them over to him and thanked him for gathering the carts on such a hot day. He smiled and said, “My pleasure, this is my job.”
It wasn’t hard to come up with a list as I determined to be more intentional with people I encounter weekly.
Perhaps you can make your own list also.
The waitress or waiter that serves me in the restaurant.
My neighbor who rolls my large garbage can to the street for pickup each week.
The checkout clerk at the store.
The person who takes the time to hold the door open for me.
A friend who gives me the gift of listening to the cry of my heart.
A grandchild who does me a favor without complaining about it.
The receptionist on the phone who is courteous and helpful.
The older gentleman who takes my ticket at the movie theater.
The teenager at the drive-through window.
Oh Jesus, I need to begin and end my day with thanking YOU first! May I never get so distracted that I overlook your mercy, grace, and yes, healing.
YOU fill me with your love, goodness, encouragement, and kindness. I am blessed by your presence each and every day.
May I never forget to stop whatever I’m doing, turn around, go back to Jesus and whisper, or even shout, THANK YOU!
Go out and make someone’s day with a “thank you”…and start with Jesus….