Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Invest in Your Relationships

It's the day before Thanksgiving. We've invested time in cooking and cleaning house, but now it is time to invest time in people. Joel Osteen says that our relationships are "emotional bank accounts" where we make deposits with encouragement and forgiveness or withdrawals with criticism and unforgiveness. I watched a video on facebook recently where a parking attendant was always smiling and complimenting people when they approached his counter to have "valid" stamped on their parking tickets. He not only validated their tickets but them as well. Some of them walked up to him with a look of discouragement and defeat in their faces, but when they walked away, they had a spring in their step and a smile on their faces. The parking attendant was making a deposit in their emotional bank accounts. Recently I visited my daughter and granddaughter. I hoped to make a deposit in their emotional bank accounts with love and encouragement because they had some trauma in their lives recently. Their friend and neighbor was shot by the police over a misunderstanding. It's a long story, but anyway, my daughter and granddaughter were heart-broken. I spent time with them, sympathized with their pain, and loved and cuddled them. I wanted them to know that while the world sometimes appears to be a violent place, family will always provide a safe haven. It's important to invest in your relationships and treat people with respect and love. I wanted to show my daughter and granddaughter how special they are. Hebrews 3:13 says, "We should encourage one another daily."

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