I remember an incident with my son that involved an exchange of words. At the time he was a young boy and I was a father who was more concerned with being more macho than manly. I had said something like: “Boy, come here, and I mean NOW!”
My son responded: “Dad when you speak to me like that it makes me feel like I’m one of your dogs.” In that instant, I was reminded of the power of the spoken word.
Solomon was a gifted-writer, and he addressed this power in the Proverbs:
• Life and death are in the power of the tongue (18:21).
• Anxiety in the heart of man causes depression, but a good word makes it glad (12:25).
Sometimes we fail to appreciate the power of showing appreciation. Leo Buscaglia captured this concept when he said: “Too often we underestimate the power of a touch, a smile, a kind word, a listening ear, an honest compliment, or the smallest act of caring, all of which have the potential to turn a life around.”
When he wrote to the Thessalonians, Paul gave clear instructions to, “encourage one another and build each other up as you are already doing (I Thess. 5:11).” Paul knew the value of invigorating friendships. He had been:
• Encouraged by Titus (2 Corinthians 7:6)
• Refreshed by Onesiphorus (2 Timothy 1:16-18)
• Strengthened by his reception at Rome: “When Paul saw them, he thanked God and took courage (Acts 28:15).”
When Paul was blessed by acts of kindness, he was careful to express his appreciation. It is important that we follow his example because to appreciate is to add value to something.
Are you an appreciating or depreciating factor in the life of your friends? Remember what Solomon said: Anxiety in the heart of man causes depression, but a good word makes it glad (12:25).
Show your appreciation to someone today with kind words of goodness and gladness.