Monday, May 27 2024 - 6:13 PM
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Gracious Gratitude

I was sorting through the emails on my computer. Curious, I opened a message from a man’s name I didn’t recognize. He had sent a LinkedIn request and a message. He wanted to know if I was the same person who used to work for my denomination’s youth magazine many years ago. I acknowledged his question and then I received a longer message. He used to read the youth magazine when he was a 16-year-old immigrant kid and he liked my writing. He had recently read something that reminded him of my writing style and he wondered if I was still alive.

This man said that my writing had encouraged him to pursue a profession in journalism. He had worked at our local newspaper in Florida, then a larger newspaper and later at the Wall Street Journal. Currently he works in another profession at a national government department.

His gracious words and gratitude came as a surprise Christmas present on a hot summer day. I was moved to tears as read his letter and then thanked him. So I read it again when my husband came home, and shared it with my adult children. I don’t get that kind of feedback every day or every year.

The Beautiful Synergy of Gratitude

I have been struggling with motivation for a writing project. Sometimes I don’t know if I still “have it.” This man’s letter seemed like Jesus had spoken through him. I was humbled to think that there are lives that I have touched and changed. I will never know about most of them but this one was a gift. God has used me and that is so humbling, amazing and fulfilling.

I am encouraged to continue to share words with those nameless, faceless people who just might be reading. I am also reminded that we all must reach out and thank those others who have influenced us. As long as they are alive, a thankful message might make a big difference in their lives. That is the beautiful synergy of gratitude.

Questions for personal journaling or group discussion:

1. Can you remember a teacher, mentor, pastor, or relative that made a difference in your life? Choose one to send a letter, email or gift this week.

2. What gift or talent have you been given or developed for which you can thank God?

If you liked this, you may also like Gratitude Brought Us Here | What Good Is Gratitude? The Role of Gratitude in Personal Development 

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About Karen Spruill

Karen Spruill

writes from Orlando, Florida.

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