7.25.2007

With Compliments

I was pretty shy all the way up until 9th grade.  I recall needing a letter of recommendation from my English teacher for some award I was applying for.  She wrote about how I had gone with her group to the local college to sell sodas as a fundraiser, and since I had done this earlier in the school year with another group, I was able to help the others around me.  In short, she saw leadership in me that I hadn't seen in myself, and her kind words gave me confidence that it was something I was good at and that I should use more.  And from that point on, I came out of my shell and became more of a leader. 

That's the thing about talent - because it comes easy to you, it's easy to discount it as not that special.  Oh, but it is special.  God was perfect in distributing talents, and there's no shame in using them for His glory.  Sometimes we can get so worried about puffing ourselves up that we commit the equally egregious sin of covering over the glorious gifts God gave us to show forth His goodness.  And sometimes we can dismiss something that comes easy to us and think that it's more noble to do something that comes harder to us, when all along what the world needs most from us is the thing we were born to do.

And sometimes all it takes to put those talents into motion is a simple compliment, like the one my 9th grade English teacher gave me.   With compliments, talents get unleashed for the world to benefit and for the Giver of those talents to be glorified.  So be generous in giving out compliments and gracious in receiving them.  I know I am thankful for the ones I receive, and eager to give out as many of my own.
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