I remember as a little girl studying the story of the Ten Lepers in Sunday School. How Jesus sent 10 away to the priests to be healed, but only one returned to say thank you. It amazed me as a little girl and amazes me still that something as physically and culturally devastating as leprosy would not jog your mind to thank the person who healed you?
Although this parable (copied below in case you forget the story) was specifically dealing with us thanking God for the things He does in our life, I try to put this into practice as much as possible in my earthly relationships. Not to puff myself up, but I have a beautiful little story to tell.
We have a maintenance guy here at my work who manages our main kitchen/eating area. He does ALOT of stuff for us. Stocks all our free food, stocks our vending machines, keeps our free drink machine working, makes gallons of coffee for us and pops popcorn every Tuesday/Thursday. Not to mention he is our GOTO person if we need any beverages for seminars or meetings.
That is where my interaction with him comes in. I stop and chat with him from time to time. (Him being Gary who is in his early 60s). Over Christmas I brought him in some cookies and just thanked him for all that he does. Last week I needed some beverages for 30 people we were hosting for lunch. He helped me get it all packed up and ready for my meeting. I brought him more cookies.
Today he asked me if I had 5 minutes. He told me that I had been so kind to him that he wanted to repay me. I said "Gary, you don't have to thank me for thanking you. You do so much around here and I wanted you to know that I notice and appreciate it."
So he sat me down at one of the lunch tables. He brought out a box, an envelope and a spray bottle of cleaning solution.
"If you can guess the suggested retail price within .50 for this cleaning solution, you can have what's in the box" he said.
Well I did....but before I could open the box he asked if I would rather exchange the box for the envelope. I could only have one prize.
I stayed with the box.
Inside the box was a $25 gift certificate to Applebees. I nearly cried! $25 for a couple plates of thank you cookies hardly seemed a fair trade. Such a sweetheart.
Being nice and saying thank you really is the correct Christian way to live our lives. Thanks to my friend and co-worker Gary, my husband and I will be having a date night tonight!
Luke 17:11-19 (New International Version, ©2011)
Jesus Heals Ten Men With Leprosy
11 Now on his way to Jerusalem, Jesus traveled along the border between Samaria and Galilee. 12 As he was going into a village, ten men who had leprosy[a] met him. They stood at a distance 13 and called out in a loud voice, “Jesus, Master, have pity on us!”
14 When he saw them, he said, “Go, show yourselves to the priests.” And as they went, they were cleansed.
15 One of them, when he saw he was healed, came back, praising God in a loud voice. 16 He threw himself at Jesus’ feet and thanked him—and he was a Samaritan.
17 Jesus asked, “Were not all ten cleansed? Where are the other nine? 18 Has no one returned to give praise to God except this foreigner?” 19 Then he said to him, “Rise and go; your faith has made you well.”
Friday, March 18, 2011
This week while waiting for the VP of International Business to enter a meeting with me, I created a matrix. It was a hand drawn time matrix of how my week goes. How many hours do I sleep, work, play, etc....
I was actually kind of shocked at what I saw and it has prompted me to make some changes, with more changes to follow. I realized that at least 50 hours a week are spent commuting to and being at work. That part doesn't bother me, it is a needed function of my time for my family.
What did bother me is the fact that during the week I only spend on average 8 hours with Princess O. If I do anything in the evening during the week it takes precious precious time away from her. If I meet a friend, stop at the grocery store, attend a meeting, it reduces those hours to such a minimal amount.
With that realization, yesterday I called in sick and spent ALL MY HOURS with my little darling. Not only did it pay off emotionally, but finally she called me Mama. :)
So if I seem to be all of a sudden stingy with my time, it is true. I am. Time is precious, my family is precious. Doesn't take a math formula, only a hand drawn scribbled matrix to realize.