Monday, April 15, 2013

The Power of a "Thank You"

There is huge power in many of the words we use; some of those have a positive impact while others have a negative effect.

About ten years ago I was interning at a church in San Diego under a great leader who taught me many lessons I've never forgotten.  One of them is: The Power of a "Thank You".

I've actually forgotten how many times we actually did this during my internship but no matter the frequency the lesson stuck!  Sometimes it would be after a big event, after a rough night, for no apparent reason at all or it was after God showed up in a powerful way.  We would get together as a team and write thank you cards (yep, like write them using a pen in our hand on a card made from paper that went in the mail with a stamp).

Now you may be thinking: "that is not some new revelation" and you're right.  This isn't some life changing, new technique that people are chomping at the bit to learn.  This is actually an old school method that shows people how important they are by taking the time to encourage them.

See we live in such a fast paced life.  Our cell phones are constantly alerting us of things.  Our Facebook feed is updating.  Twitter, Instagram, Vine and everything else is grabbing at our attention so when you take the time to hand write a thank you card and mail it to someone there is a lasting impact.

Let me give you some reasons to write a thank you card:

  • Someone helped you out when you desperately needed them
  • A leader recruited more people for their team
  • Someone helped send students to a summer (or winter) camp
  • An Elder went to bat for you
  • Someone cleaned poop off the bathroom mirror
  • Taking a week off to come to summer camp
  • A student stepped out of their comfort zone and prayed on stage cause your voice hurt
  • Someone stayed late to counsel a hurting person
  • People stayed late to clean the church
  • A leader went over and above their normal role
  • Someone came early and helped you set-up
  • Someone preached because you were puking
  • You received a gift from someone 
Now I know many of these are examples related to ministry but most of these are things I've written thank you cards for.  So often I hear from people how valued and important they felt when I sent them a hand written thank you card.  If you don't believe me, try it for yourself and experience the power of a thank you! 

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