When I was in seminary, someone suggested that we should keep a file that held the thank you notes we received. These word of kindness about how you made a difference in someone’s life, would see you through the hard times. In those moments when the people you minister too think that you can’t do anything right or when it seems that you met resistance to your ministry and ideas, the file and notes will remind you of who you are and who you strive to be. Those words will comfort you and uplift your soul. These words help me through tough times.
I wanted to thank you for your beautiful sermon this morning, and for being there for Bellamy the other day. I so wish Bellamy could have been in church to hear your message as I'm sure the words would soothe her heart and soul. When she told me that she had spoken with you about what's happening in her life, I was so relieved. She has kept so much inside for so long, and tried to hide the hurt and confusion, and it only adds to the stress and results in making things worse for herself. …. Thank you for your support and guidance and friendship, we all have people that come in and out of our lives for reasons we can't imagine. I'm so happy you came into ours.... Happy Birthday (late) by the way, I hope and pray that your days are peaceful and fulfilling and joyful.
Who could you write that note to? The person who sat with you when you received the hard news. The person who took out your trash, walked your dog, raked your leaved, plowed your snow, brought you a hot dish. The person who you went to lunch, coffee, a movie, a concert with you. The person who delivers your paper, fixed the plumbing, got your heat going. The person who did that job at church that you are no longer able to do. Who do you appreciate for their presence in your life? You never know what difference your words can make to the person who receives the note.
Can you imagine a world where we practiced thankfulness and spread thanks to the people we encounter? This November I invite you to take on the promise of Thanksgiving and send a note every week to someone who has touched your life. Send them a note, an email, a text that tells them what they did, how much you appreciate them, and how it helped you.