Tuesday's Tip to bENCOURAGEd...
It is amazing what you can learn from someone even in the simplest of conversations. I am a mother of two wonderful children and I have a lot to learn about parenting, so when I get around a more wiser experienced mother - especially one that has raised productive and fulfilled children - I strive to be all ears.
I remember one time going over to a friend's house - where we then walked over to her neighbor’s home. This “neighbor” lady had raised several successful children and proudly displayed their photos around her home. She took me through a tour of her family's life in photos from her hallways to her living room as I admired her family photo gallery and beautiful frames. She definitely had a gift for decorating, which I noticed immediately because I do not have that same talent. Her frames not only looked elaborate and classy but also they perfectly complimented her home decor.
As we walked into her living room, above her mantel of coordinated arrangements, I noticed an unusual medium sized frame hanging on her wall. There, displayed for all her guests to see, was a strange looking picture frame. This frame did not have perfectly placed jewels or sterling silver inlaid carvings like her others, but instead was crooked with visible glue spots and what looked like Popsicle sticks protruding out of the corners. It was evident, because of the location of this particular frame, that this was her favorite one. I asked her to tell me about this unique centerpiece. Her eyes lit up and she told me a detailed story about how her kids had come together and made this for her, because of her love for pictures.
It is interesting that even though I was only in this person's house for a few moments and I have not seen or talked to this person since, I still remember something so profound that she said. After she finished telling the story of her precious gift she said, with tears in her eyes, "The picture that makes this frame is so special because it is framed not by wood, glass, or beautiful gems, but it is framed in love.". I was moved by how this mother defined love. Her definition of love put that frame above any of her other treasured possessions. Her children, who made that make shift frame, probably looked at it and thought, "Mom it doesn't match anything else, plus we all know that you like it, but you can take it down now." But to her it was her favorite piece of art - because it was made with love.
This memory reminds me that while words encourage, so do actions. When we see someone enjoying a gift that we made or that we gave it encourages us to keep producing. One of the most encouraging things to me is knowing that something that I produced actually inspired or encouraged someone. It takes action to create, but it also takes action to celebrate. Creating, or producing something should inspire or help someone be more productive, while celebrating, or acknowledging will also help someone if not many more people be Inspired, be Productive, and be Fulfilled.
How can we frame our encouragement with love?
When we are purposeful about our encouragement we can frame it in love. Encouragement does NOT have to be time consuming, expensive, or perfect. A great way to remember what encouragement should look like is my High FIVE acronym - Friendly ~ Inspiring ~ Valuable ~ Encouragement!
Last week's You Tube video explained what High FIVE is...
This week bENCOURAGEd to check out 5 ways on how you can give a High FIVE!...