Two, Four, Six, Eight; Who Do We Appreciate? – Infectious Quality
Tim Stafford started his writing career with Ignite Your Faith magazine (then Youth for Christ’s Campus Life). He moved his family to Kenya and founded Step magazine, for Christian youth in Africa.
With Philip Yancey, he co-authored notes for the popular Student Bible. Now a senior writer for Christianity Today, Tim has written many books. He lives in Santa Rosa, California, with his wife Popie, a counselor.
What He Said … Infectious Quality
I learned about affirmation from the woman who became my wife. She and a circle of friends blew the cover off my guarded words. When they saw something they liked in someone, they just said it. They showed appreciation with hugs and smiles. They were so free and warm some people didn’t know how to take it. But everyone who came into their circle was delighted.
I could see stiffness and cynicism falling off others as they fumbled to acknowledge the compliments given to them. I saw their lives begin to open up and respond. For the first time, I realized that affirming words were more than a social grace. They had the power to change lives and relationships.
Almost without my realizing it, a response was awakened in me. I began to do my own share of affirmation. One friend told me he was quite startled at the bloom of compliments, hugs, and pats from me. Appreciation can spread from one person to another and through a whole community. But somebody has to start it.
Adapted from Personal God (Zondervan, 2007)
Prayer for the Week: Teach me, Lord, how to mirror you by becoming a positive force in the lives of my family and acquaintances.