Wednesday, May 31, 2017

“The Window”
An anonymous story that I came across tells of two men who were seriously ill and shared a hospital room. Both men had to lie flat on their backs, except one man, the one nearer the window was allowed to sit up for one hour a day to take his medicine. This one hour would be an important one for the man who had to remain flat on his back.
For that hour the man would describe what he saw out the hospital window. He described the park across the street from the hospital and the people he would see strolling along. He would talk about the weather and the man who fed the birds every day about that time. That man came every day, rain or shine. There were children playing and young couples hand in hand ambling along the paths.
One day, it must have been a holiday, there was some special parade. The man described in detail what he saw below. The man on his back lived for this hour, the hour of the day when, though flat on his back, he could become free through the vision of the man near the window.
One morning the nurse came in to give the men their medicine and found the man near the window lying lifeless, but peaceful in his bed. It was sad, but mostly for the man on his back, since his eyes to the world had left. When he felt it was appropriate, he asked the nurse for the bed next to the window.
The nurse obliged moving the man to the other side of the room. Slowly the man began to prop himself up to get a glimpse of the park across the street and the people he had grown to love day by day as he lay on his back. As the man peered through the window glass he did not see the park, but only a brick wall. Disappointed, he rang for the nurse and asked why she thought the man had told so many stories when all he saw was a wall. “Maybe he just wanted to encourage you,” she said softly.
Encouragement is taking joy in making other people feel good about themselves. It is making others happy or at least happier by helping them think of brighter things outside their world of pain, sorrow, or depression. People need affirmation. They need someone to give them hope. They need someone to pump them up when they are down and sometimes even carry them.
It’s become popular at high school football games when it gets to the fourth quarter for the bands to play and the fans are holding up four fingers, signifying that it’s at the end and encouraging to either stay ahead or make a comeback that wins the game. The cheers of the crowd become louder; the bands play more, and teams get fired up as everyone encourages their boys to win. It’s the fourth quarter!
Many people get discouraged not only because of the situation but because they feel nobody cares. They feel they are tackling their problems alone. They struggle through life feeling lost and alone. They don’t have cheerleaders and fans who they can see cheering them on. They can only hear the voices in their head reminding them of the struggles they face.
It doesn’t take much to encourage people. It costs nothing to lift someone up who has found themselves down. Words of encouragement and embracements of love go a long way in building up an individual. Simple words, freely given can do so much to lift a person’s spirit and help them through some tough times. Every person we meet each and every day can use kind, simple words telling them they are doing a good job and that what they do is appreciated. Words of encouragement tell people, “You matter” and “You are important.”
Let us all take the time to encourage one another. Let us all build others up. Let us all let the people we meet know that we care for them. Let us all brighten the day of someone who is on their back, down and out. Let’s tell them about the park and the people we see. Let’s describe the parade passing by the window.
Carry each other’s burdens, and in this way you will fulfill the law of Christ.
Galatians 6:2

1 comment:

  1. Thanks for the word of encouragement about encouragement!