Sean and Leigh Anne Tuohy, the real-life couple portrayed in the movie Blindside, share the following story in their book In a Heartbeat:
“There is a little-known congressional program that awards internships to young people who have aged out of the foster care system. These are kids who were never adopted, and are no longer eligible for state support. One of these interns was hired as staff to a United States senator.
One morning the senator breezed in for a meeting and discovered that his intern was already in the office, reorganizing the entire mailroom. The senator said to the intern, ‘This is amazing. The mailroom has never looked so clean. You did a great job.’ A few minutes later the senator saw that the intern had tears streaming down his face.
The senator was worried that he might have said or done something to make the young man cry. So he asked if everything was okay. When the young man answered that the senator had said or done nothing wrong, the senator begin to probe a little more. Finally the young man shared with the senator, ‘˜That’s the first time in my life anyone’s told me that I did something good.'”
Now I don’t know anything about this senator’s faith but I know that he was following the example of a young man named Joseph who shows up in the Book of Acts. Joseph was his given name but the disciples nicknamed him Barnabas, which means son of encouragement. And the name described him perfectly. After all, at the core of his being, Barnabas was an encourager.
You know, it amazes me what a little bit of attention, a kind word and a little encouragement can do to change someone’s life for the better. I wonder what would happen if we each decided to be a Barnabas to someone this week. I wonder what would happen if we decided we would be an encourager to everyone who crossed our paths this week. This week, let’s be sons and daughters of encouragement and see what happens!
Take care and God bless! See you Sunday at the encouraging place!