Good Days…Bad Days With Maureen Pratt

Good Days…Bad Days With Maureen Pratt


To Be Encouraged, Encourage Someone Else

posted by mpratt

Maureen Pratt Author PicTime and again, I’ve seen the amazing transformation in someone who is deeply suffering (whether with pain, illness, or other pressures), when they receive a kind, uplifting, or unexpectedly positive remark from someone else. Part of this is, I think, because kindness is fundamentally, well, kind, and the response to it is of like tenor.

But another reason is, I think, a bit more complicated. If you live with chronic illness or pain, you take that with you everywhere, and it has a habit of reflecting in gestures, words, or expressions. So, when you met someone who is similarly suffering, your pain joins with theirs, in a sense, and soon your interaction can become just one, big, glopping swirl of pain. But it need not be; just as pain ampilfies pain, so too can kindness or an extension of encouragement defuse it.

A simple way to test this is in conversation with a friend. Here’s the first version:

“How are you?”

“Horrible. And life is just getting harder.”

“Oh, I know what you mean. I can’t believe the way my stress is just getting worse.”

“Yeah, and there’s no end in sight.”

“No. None.”

Heavens, it makes me feel weighed down just be typing it! Now, here’s the second version:

“How are you?”

“Oh, the pain is terrible. But I’m glad you called.”

“I’m happy to hear that. I didn’t know if I’d be disturbing you, or if you were resting.”

“I was, but that’s okay. It’s always nice to hear from you.”

“Well, I was thinking of you. I really respect how you cope.”

“Thanks! It isn’t easy, but friends make it easier. ”

See how, right away, the caller and the called are acknowledging pain, but they also find a ray of encouragement for each other.  A caring friend. An appreciative patient.

Yes, it can be as simple as that, and it can work with strangers, too. Smiling, holding the elevator,  slowing down for someone who is moving more slowly than you are – these and other things are subtle but powerful ways of encouraging someone else. And in so doing, you can be encouraged that you’re living out your Christian walk and, perhaps, giving someone else the spark they need to ignite within them renewed hope.

Despite our pain and other health challenges, the more we seek to encourage others, the more we ourselves will be encouraged. We might not be able to banish our physical problems, but we can certainly lighten the load on our [emotional] hearts!

Blessings for the day,
Maureen

 



Previous Posts

TLC Tuesday: Laugh!
Oh, yes, I know about the scientific studies and the group research touting its benefits. I know all about the mechanics and the music of it. But sometimes, it is difficult to find the gift and the boost of laughter. Suggestion for today:  Perhaps you are having a bad day, or know someone who

posted 1:24:57am Aug. 19, 2014 | read full post »

Chronic illness: Forming our destinies
One of my favorite subjects was and still is history. I think we can learn a lot about our todays and our futures by learning from the past. For example - think about how hard life was in the 18th and 19th centuries, how undeveloped medical science was and how short "average" lifespans were. Yet, th

posted 1:13:25am Aug. 18, 2014 | read full post »

Chronic Pain: For the Birds!
Seagulls regularly land on my skylights and attempt to crack open shells. Invariably, they make a ruckus! But they also tend to lose their footing rather quicky and slide down, mak

posted 1:57:12am Aug. 16, 2014 | read full post »

Chronic illness: Sweating it out
During long days at high school band practice, baking under the blazing August sun and sweating buckets, I learned the importance of hydration - replacing the fluid our bodies los

posted 1:48:44am Aug. 14, 2014 | read full post »

TLC Tuesday: Gently, Gently
A harsh word, a sudden move, an angry outburst - we've all made them and felt them from others. Not uplifting or comforting, these brusk and sometimes brutal actions. For today's TLC Tuesday, the word and action is "gently." Gently steer yourself today, praying for patience and love to fill your

posted 1:39:45am Aug. 12, 2014 | read full post »




Report as Inappropriate

You are reporting this content because it violates the Terms of Service.

All reported content is logged for investigation.