Encircled in Strangers Arms
This year our Girl's Camp theme is "Light the Fire Within" focusing on the Olympics and being a finisher. My friend Linda (the stake camp leader) has put more work into this year getting ready than I thought even humanly possible. It really is amazing.
She is putting together a video of inspirational sports stories to show the girls. This is one they have found and I just had to share it on my blog.
I have been thinking a lot this week about blogging and how weird a world it is right along side how amazing it is. my good friend received some interesting/insensitive comments regarding a mother's day post she wrote about on her blog and it has really thrown her for a loop. I have been there. A year ago I received a comment on my blog that had me crying and not blogging for a week. My heart has really gone out to her.
So what does a video about girls softball have to do with blogging? Well, you will see in the video that it is the competitor team that is able to help the girl win the game - the girls that don't know her and how important this was to her, they were the ones that were able to help her the most that day. There was power in strangers hands.
Sometimes a compliment from a complete stranger may have more impact than if your mom or husband gives you the same compliment. A positive comment on a blog from a stranger could really make someones day because you may think, "they didn't have to say that!" Just as a rude comment from a stranger could really make someones day difficult because you may think, "they didn't have to say that!"
I really believe that there is a super strength of motivation and encouragement that we can give to someone who does not know us. I rarely go a day without making an effort to go up to a stranger and compliment their hair, clothes or something I saw them do that really impressed me. It kind of started out as a game but has become a habit for me now. I have actually become friends with a lady who's hair I complimented at a store. Turns our her husband is Navy and is kind of in a weird way my husbands boss. Every time I run into her it is a joy.
I remember one day I went up to a dad in his car in the Safeway parking lot. He was even pulling away and I had him roll down his window. I had watched him with his three boys who all were rowdy and screaming and crying when they got to the check out and saw all the candy. He held his ground by not buying them any but was always soft and sweet about it. He never raised his voice or got frustrated at them during the 8 minutes in the check out line of utter chaos. I was so impressed by him. (remember I am the mom who buys treats and balloons for my kids to bribe them to stay as quiet as possible or else I will totally lose it) He was so tender and soft all while his three year old was screaming and hitting him. I told him I was so impressed with his parenting skills and I learned a big lesson that day to stand my ground as a parent ( i am admitily a wimp and give in easily) but that it was still possible to be loving.
He seemed surprised by my comment but very appreciative. I had wondered what a man in the middle of the afternoon was doing with his kids at the grocery store, was he divorced, widowed, was his wife sick, it was interesting to me.
giving compliments to strangers is a fun thing to do and a great example to your children.
Yesterday I was so lucky to have lunch with a blogger and a sister in law to my cousin, Elisa. Lisa has tried to two years to meet me and get together. I have thought I was too busy and far away to meet her. (i am like 8 miles) I never make time to go to lunch with friends and always thing it is not possible with my little kids. She never gave up on emailing me. I so appreciate her never giving up on me after I would not email her back or not give up on me when I only seem to contact her when I needed something. She is an incredible resource for the D.C. area - she is the only reason I know about the ribbon outlet!
She was so nice and brought me a gift as well as a coloring book and stickers for Sally Jane (who was near perfect and sat in silence) I could not believe how much I enjoyed sitting and chatting and also talking about how much we love Elisa!
While we were talking she shared with some wonderful parenting tips (next time we go to lunch I am bringing notepad to take notes)
One of the things she shared with me was the power of strangers hands lifting our children in ways that may not be possible as parents. It gave me a sense of responsibility at girls camp thinking of the parents who may send their daughters praying that one adult will embrace her, love her and help her feel the spirit. Thanks Lisa for the best hour and half this week and letting me listen to your soothing voice. Next time I hope my camera will work!
So i will be so bold as to issue a challenge to do by Sunday evening. It is simple, easy and free!
Compliment one stranger!In person, on the street, tell your neighbor that you never have talked to how much you love their garden, tell one of the young women at church how beautiful she is, thank someone in military uniform for their service (check out this site for a neat way to thank them) tell someone you like their haircut... it is easy and the more you do it, it will become a habit. this is a great challenge to give yourself to do daily if you have moved to a new town as you can go the whole day of not talking to anyone.
Let me know how it goes.
* and would you believe that I didn't buy and of the milk glass at the garage sale. being able to see it and take a photo was just as exciting to me(it was even more exciting to Jeff)