I came across some wise words today…
One tree can start a forest; One smile can begin a friendship; One hand can lift a soul; One word can frame the goal; One candle can wipe out darkness; One laugh can conquer gloom; One hope can raise your spirits; One touch can show you care; One life can make the difference. Be that ONE today.
The past few weeks, as my father-in-law has been diligently working with occupational and physical therapists to regain mobility after surgery, I’ve seen yet another facet of the power of one… the difference an individual’s determination and perseverance make.
Dad will be 93 in August, and yet his therapists have often remarked how his “stick-to-it-iveness” surpasses that of others half his age! He won’t quit but keeps pushing himself with the goal of returning to the way he was before a fall (nothing broken, thankfully!) led to surgery (for a pre-existing condition) that led to several weeks in a rehab facility and then coming home and adjusting to new capabilities and limitations… at least for the time being!
And that’s where the power of one comes into play… none of us can do the hard work of recovery for him: not the therapists, not his children (which includes my husband), not even yours truly — although we all wish we could do something to help, to make things easier for him, to make sure he doesn’t fall or somehow injure himself. Sometimes our “helping” actually has the opposite effect, to be honest. We can get in the way, especially when we project our own ideas on him.
The power of one has also been evident when observing the difference a phone call or visit can make. Or having something to look forward to.
The book of Proverbs — often referred to as “Wisdom Literature” in the Bible — says that “A word fitly spoken is like apples of gold in a setting of silver.” Or, more poetically, “Winsome words spoken at just the right time are as appealing as apples gilded in gold and surrounded with silver.” (see Proverbs 25:11)
What we say matters. Really. Our words have the power to encourage, to build up, to bring hope and refreshment… or they can destroy, tear down, sow discouragement and discord. Sometimes it’s better to not say anything than to say something harsh or hurtful… and then live with regret because those words can never be unsaid.
A smile, a hand, a word, a laugh, a touch… all of these can, as the wise words shared earlier, begin a friendship, lift a soul, frame the goal, conquer gloom, show you care.
May we all seek to be the one who makes a difference in someone else’s life… and as a result, together we can have joy in the journey of this thing called “Life.”