Written by Bruce Osborn, Director of Spiritual Development
If you’ve spent any time with our Service Without Boundaries population, you have probably met Jacob. And if you’ve had the chance to meet him, you can’t forget him, nor can you forget his positivity. It can be contagious. And if you don’t catch it, it will most certainly lift your spirit for the day and make any burdens you might be carrying seem just a little bit lighter for the moment.
Most every day, when my path crosses his, our greeting goes something like this:
Me: “Hey Jacob, how’s it going”?
Jacob, with a big smile: “Every day’s a holiday.”
And by the way he responds with that statement, I know that’s not a half-hearted greeting. He truly believes it. I am sure he has his moments, like we all do. But it never shows. He bleeds positivity. He is an encourager, just by the way he relates to those around him.
In the writings of the apostle Paul, he gives a wealth of instruction to Christians to be encouragers. In fact, there are some twenty-five references in his New Testament writings to encourage others. One of my favorites is in Romans 12, where he writes these words:
“We all have different gifts…if (yours) is serving, then serve; if it is teaching, then teach; if it is to encourage, then give encouragement…”
We have too much division and negativity in our world today. And it’s fed by twenty-four-hour news sources, social media, and all forms of media readily available at the click of a button. It can almost be all-consuming if you allow it to be. But we have control over what we allow to influence our attitudes and behaviors. The question we must wrestle with is what are we allowing into our minds and hearts to be that influence?
I don’t know about you, but I could use more of Jacob’s influence and a lot less of the culture around me.
This week, we’ll celebrate our nation’s independence. It’s one of the best holidays of the year for most everyone. It’s a time to reflect on the freedoms we have as a nation. Wouldn’t it be nice if every day was like Independence Day? Maybe a moment to reflect is what we all need this coming weekend; on our freedoms, our part in the culture that’s been and is being created around us, or on how we can be an influence for good by using the spiritual gifts we’ve been given, just like Jacob does every day.
We have the power to choose what is good and what is right. And we have the opportunity every day to allow that choice to be a positive influence in our world. When we realize just how powerful our words and attitudes can impact those around us, and like Jacob, we choose attitudes and words of encouragement, we begin to see that truly “every day’s a holiday.”
Happy Independence Day! Keep shining your light for what is good and what is right. And like Jacob, let’s make every day a holiday.