Sunday afternoon I was going through some things of my Grams that my Mom had brought for me. As I was picking items up from the box I noticed a few envelopes. Looking closer, I instantly knew what they were and my eyes started welling up with tears.
Last year, after we found out her cancer was back, Grams had surgery right before our birthdays. We had hoped she would be out of the hospital and at my brother's by her birthday but the surgery was much more intensive than any of us knew.
Mom, My SIL, and I tried to organize a card shower for her, to encourage her and let her know that people were praying for her. I got on facebook and sent a message to some of my friends who have kids (some of whom I teach Piano to) and asked if they would be willing to draw her a picture or send her something. I remember being surprised at how excited everyone was to help. They were touched that I had reached out and asked them and were excited to help cheer her up.
Months later, when my Grams finally made it back to Indiana and I was able to see her, she told me all about the wonderful mail she had received from my friends and students. She was so tickled by some of them, and was proud that I had such nice friends who loved me, and also thru me, her. It really meant a lot to her.
So much that she kept them.
When I opened up that box this afternoon I found three different envelopes of the sweetest, and cutest little cards and notes and pictures, notes written by the adults with prayers and scripture verses.
I read them with tears rolling down my cheeks.
I know I talk about being a JoyGiver and how it doesn't take much and one small act of kindness can change someone's day. It didn't take much for those people to write a little note, and the kids to draw a little picture, a stamp and an address and off it went to another state to encourage someone who was going through a dark time.
I know they probably forgot about the cards, but she didn't. She kept them and would look at them often. And now, over a year later, as I deal with her death, those same cards are encouraging me. Knowing that people took time out of their busy lives to send something nice to someone they didn't know, just because their friend asked. Knowing how much it meant to her to get all of those handmade cards and drawings. She felt loved.
It doesn't take much to impact someone's life. Those cards meant so much to her, and seeing that and knowing that it made her smile, means so much to me.
Pastor Steve was speaking at church today about how we all have something to give. Whether big or small we all are equipped to help people. Will we do it? Or will we have an excuse that it takes too much time, or you're tired tonight, or you don't know that person and you would feel silly. We all have excuses. And we're great at coming up with an excuse to justify not doing something that makes us uncomfortable! But think about the benefits. What if you could touch someone's life? What if you could not only touch someone's life for a moment, but over a year later, your kindness is still impacting others?
What is holding you back from going and doing God's will?!
Be a #JoyGiver.
Even when you're tired.
Even when it's awkward.
We're all awkward.
Awkward is normal.
Be a #JoyGiver and mean something to someone.