Tuesday, June 5, 2007

Affirming Words

"Never doubt in the dark what God has revealed to you in the light."

Good advice: not easy to follow but sound wisdom nevertheless.

I find that more often than not that I feel I am in the dark, in the twilight or shadows. Doubting, not so much what God has revealed, but how I feel about my own abilities or more precisely, my capability to do all that I am responsible to do.

It takes failing at just one endeavor for me to start disregarding everything I've accomplished.

I'm a firstborn and accustomed to things coming easily and being successful and when they don't and when I'm not, I have not developed ways of handling that.

But I've discovered that I do have a way that helps: it helps even when I'm being moderately successful and not only when I'm discouraged by failure.

I've begun to save affirming words - treasured words like the rare gems they are in dust of day to day living: cards, personal notes, and copies of emails make up this collection and most of these have found a place in the pages of my Bible, which just seems highly appropriate that the place I go for encouragement from my God is also a repository of affirmation from those around me whose opinions I value.

It is a good thing for me to gather these jewels that sparkle when days are dark. To know, in black and white, that how I'm feeling this day is not all that there is.

Also to remember that if I feel this way, chances are that I am not alone. If it is in my power to speak or write affirming words to someone else, I should, as often as possible. The Bible says that a word fitly spoken is like apples of gold in pictures of silver. Honestly I've never understood the visual example there but I can recognize that these words are valuable and beautiful and treasures.

And this is one treasure that I can freely distribute because even though it costs me nothing it has the ability to enrich someone else for a very long time as demonstrated by those slips of paper falling out of my Bible...

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