– James H. Aughey
It Changes our Focus
I believe cheerfulness is a choice. We have control over our attitude and if we have an attitude of gratitude toward God, our focus has changed. Cheerfulness is contagious and it just seems to keep spreading outward like the ripples in a pond, and incidentally, those same ripples usually return to the spot where it began.
It Changes the Attitude
When we show cheerfulness to others, it may affect the other person in a positive way, but like the ripples in the pond, it returns to the sender. Cheerfulness is like paying it forward, only to have it return to the one who sent it, “Therefore encourage one another and build one another up, just as you are doing” (1st Thess 5:11).
It Changes the Problem
I remember a true story of where a man had just bought some antifreeze and had already mixed it with water and put it in his trunk in case he needed it and did he need it! In just a few miles, there was a car that had smoke coming out of it and so he pulled over and there was a single mother who had 3 crying children and broken down on the highway on a 100 degree day. He cheerfully helped the mother and got her on her way home….and the man’s foresight (with the antifreeze) changed the woman’s problem into a solution.
It Changes Others
Timing is everything when you want to cheer someone up. As King Solomon wrote, “A word fitly spoken is like apples of gold in a setting of silver” (Prov 25:11) and the word could be fitting into the conversation at just the right time and that could make their day from a bad day or a typical day, into a more positive experience. One little word can mean a lot!
It Changes You
I still believe it helps the one who encourages others or compliments others more than those who he or she is speaking to. If I say something, I want to ask myself; “is it helpful, it is important,” or “is it necessary?” If it’s not, I don’t say it. I would rather err on the side of encouragement than saying something negative.
If we really want to be building others up, we’ll be cheerful, thankful, grateful, and we’ll express it to others. A good and uplifting word can really go a long way in someone’s day because “an apt answer is a joy to a man, and a word in season, how good it is” (Prov 15:23)!