Thursday, September 11, 2008

Knowing I Belong

Knowing I belong...Knowing I matter....Knowing I have respect and honor are key to my prospects of thriving at anything.

Yesterday I wrote about the initiation of a new ministry work: Soteria Prison Ministry newsletter and inmate correspondence. I spent much time drawing from the pastor/pardoned exoffender what our audience, the inmates, will look for in our publications. His words were, "They need to know they have value and that they will be assets when they are discharged."

As I listened to him and watched his facial reactions as I probed for more descriptions of the feelings on "the inside," I sensed his remembrance of a loss of personhood. The sadness that fell on his eyes moved me greatly.

Hasn't everyone felt that to some degree? Today I'm impacted with the power of noticing people at every level. Everyone deserves attention. I've always been fascinated by people...all people. So, I've always known people I have come in contact with on a regular basis. I know the tellers at my bank. I'm even making a choker for one of them. She keeps admiring one of my necklaces and recently she told me how she loves jewelry and especially chokers.

Today I'm convicted that I can do a better job in respecting and honoring all people that serve me and that I encounter on a regular basis.

A college student found a major question on a business exam was "What is the first name of the woman who cleans the school in this building?" Most students had to hand in the exam with that question blank. One concerned student inquired of the professor if that cleaning lady question would count as much as the other questions in their ultimate grade.

"Oh, yes," the professor declared, "your respect and honor for the many people you will meet in your career is important. Each one of those people are significant. They deserve your notice and validation. If all you do is smile and say "hello," they matter enough to be acknowledged."

How can we validate people's value better?


Denise said...

Thanks for sharing, may you be blessed.

Laura said...

Thank you for this reminder. I usually feel like I pay attention to people but this one made me go "ouch". Due to extreme busyness, I have let this one slide lately. Isn't that at the root of what we all need - to know we matter? You matter so much to me - Love you!!!

© 2008 Kay Martin

Thrive In Christ

Who I Am In Christ by Neil Anderson

For several months we will center on this book to pursue Thriving in our Christian journey.

Neil challenges us with: "Do you know who you are in God's eyes? We are no longer products of our past. We are primarily products of Christ's work on the cross. Who we are determines what we do.

You are not who you are in Christ because of the things you have done, you are in Christ because of what He has done. He died and rose again so that you and I could live in the FREEDOM of His love."

That's just the introduction. More to follow.