Two things happened in the six days prior to my birthday that inspired me to turn the encouragement I found that day into this book of encouragement for others.
First, on November 14, 2017 I read a Facebook post by a woman named Spring Bowlin. She wrote about seeing a Walmart cashier taking extra time and extra care to help a nervous customer. She then spoke about how it impacted her.
My heart was warmed at Wal-Mart during lunch.
This gentleman's items were scanned and he was given the total. He looks apologetically back at me and starts taking handfuls of change out of his pockets. He miscounts and starts to get flustered. Gives me a muttered, "I'm so sorry." His hands and voice are shaking. This beautiful cashier takes his hands and dumps all the change on the counter and says, "This is not a problem, honey. We will do this together." He continues to apologize to both of us as we reassure him it's ok. They get his transaction handled and he shuffles away.
I looked at this wonderful woman and said, "Thank-you for being so patient with him."
She shakes her head and replies, "You shouldn't have to thank me, baby. What's wrong with our world is we've forgotten how to love one another."
I want to be more like her.
Apparently, Spring Bowlin wasn’t the only one moved by that gentle reminder of how the golden rule still rules. She told me what has happened since that day,
“My family and I are in awe of the response to a simple fb post about one sweet lady’s act of kindness…
I cannot count the number of news outlets (online, print, and television) that reached out...from across the country and Canada…
Even now, I receive hundreds of friend requests, daily, from all over the world! Last I looked, the story had been liked 186,000 times, 100,000 shares, and had 7800 comments.”
Second, on November 19, 2017, Actor and Singer, Jamie Foxx opened the American Music Awards with an inspiring message that spoke about the healing power of music. He concluded with these uplifting words…
“As this year comes to a close, we look forward to 2018 with hope.
For even as we mourn those who are lost, we know this –
together our strength will pull us through,
together we shall overcome the pain,
together we can unite as a people and a nation."
So, to answer the question asked at the start of this Introduction, “Where Do You Find Encouragement?”, the answer is this...
Everywhere you look for it.
It’s the kind, gracious, empowering and uplifting things people from all walks of life do, say and share with each other.
And all it takes to be one of those people is to speak and act with love towards others.
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