Friday, December 1, 2017

Encouragement and Persistence

Over the years I have witnessed the importance of both encouragement and persistence.

When I was a teenager, I was given the task of building an addition onto a home. The wealthy business man came home on the weekends and instructed me for the work week ahead. It was to be an adobe house with a tile roof and decorative tiles on the steps and entry area.

In order to even start on the project, I had to dig out a very tall and mature palm tree. I must have worked on that tree with my pick and shovel for hours, when the lady of the house came out with some much needed lemonade in the 110 degree sun. She told me I needed to rest and drink the lemonade. Actually, I had just heard a voice for the 3rd time call my name. It wasn’t her. I had just realized it was somehow God speaking to me to get out of the sun for awhile when she came with the lemonade. I was determined to get that tree loose and out, but encouragement was what I really needed to be refreshed, both mentally and physically. The home was later written up in a magazine as “an island in the sky” with a Latin beauty to it.

I remember once, helping a 2nd grade girl with penmanship and sound-blending words. She had many learning difficulties and found writing and following instructions very difficult. As we do with all of our students, I kept encouraging her and showing her how to form the letters correctly and blending the sounds of the words without stopping her voice. After awhile she began to succeed. A glow came over her when she realized she had finally spelled the words correctly by sounding them out and writing them correctly. It was only her second day at Stilwell's Learning Center and she was already feeling more confident.

Another time, while I was in the grocery store, a parent of a former student proudly told me her son was now taking pre-med courses at the university. This student had also needed much encouragement and training in persistence. In turn, her comments encouraged me that I had been a help in preparing him for his life goal to be a doctor.
If you are in a position to encourage a child, a young person or even an adult, just think how it might influence him/her. You are an important person in the life of that person. Don’t underestimate the power of encouragement to mold a spirit of persistence into someone in need!

"Be like a postage stamp. Stick to it until you get there." Harvey Mackay 

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