Yesterday I was reading my daily devotional, while spending some quality time with the Lord and it really spoke to me so I thought I would share what it meant to me today in this blog post.
The article in The Word for Today was entitled “Give Them Another Chance” and spoke about giving people a break when things don’t go as we hoped for in life.
I find more and more as the years pass that life often throws things up at us that we did not want or expect. Often friends and family leave us and sometimes even cut us out of their lives.
Sometimes we lose the job that we were relying on to allow us to pay our bills.
We may find that we or a loved one becomes sick and then we have other hurdles to face and overcome.
In the devotional there were two examples given of people whose lives could have gone 2 very different ways. But the fact was that they had someone in their life that believed in them and supported them and, where necessary, forgave them and they ended up living Victorious lives.
One man was Nathaniel Hawthorne. Nathaniel lost his job. When he came home and told his wife she could have reacted in a multitude of ways.
His wife could have focused on their finances and said something like, “How could you have lost your job? What are we going to do now? How will we feed the kids and pay the school fees? Now we might lose our home to the bank!”
Or perhaps Nathaniel’s wife could have attacked him personally and said, “What? Nathaniel, you are a loser! You have never been able to provide for this family like you should! What is wrong with you?”
Now think about it. Would either of these responses been helpful in this situation? Would either of these reactions have brought light out of the darkness?
My answer is “No!”
So it is good to know that Nathaniel Hawthorne’s wife responded totally differently and changed not only their own lives, but also the lives of many others for good!
His wife said, “Nathaniel, what a great opportunity this is for you! Now you can begin to write that book that have talked about for so long.”
In 1850 Nathaniel Hawthorne published his first novel, “The Scarlet Letter“, which is a romantic novel in a historical setting. More novels followed.
Without Nathaniel’s boss firing him from his job and then his wife encouraging him to write this book, we may never have any of his literary works.
James Abbott McNeill Whistler failed at becoming a minister, as his mother had hoped for him. He then failed at West Point, United States Military Academy and was thrown out for misconduct in drawing class. He then went on to fail in business.
So what did James have left after all of these failures?
I would imagine that he was not feeling too good about himself and his prospects for the future.
But James Whistler had a friend who believed in him and encouraged him to try painting.
Well James did paint and he created the portrait that many of us will be well aware of named, ‘Whistler’s Mother‘ in 1871.
Whistler went on to paint many other portraits and even full-length portraits over a period from the 1870’s to right through the 1880’s.
Now it is likely that neither of these men, Nathaniel or James, would have reached their full potential and touched many lives throughout the years without having someone to believe in them.
So have a look around you today and find someone who you can believe in. Be a cheerleader instead of being a critic. Find a person and go and make a difference in their life for good!
Until next time, Remember to Enjoy Life, Smile at a Stranger and Make a Difference in the World!
Leanne Annett <><