By Shellie Miller-Farrugia

“…over the years I have observed that some attributes of leadership are universal and are often about finding ways of encouraging people to combine their efforts, their talents, their insights, their enthusiasm, and their inspiration to work together.”
– Queen Elizabeth II

At a recent Sunday service in a very tiny church, the congregation was treated to a little 8-year-old girl’s special dance to honor God. The sound system had been sketchy for most of the morning’s worship, so when the special song came on over the speakers, it was no surprise when it went silent for a measure or two. Undaunted by the lull, this sweet little lady went on with her graceful routine as though nothing was out of the ordinary. Although unfamiliar with the song personally, it was evident during the next moment of silence that the majority of congregants knew the words and the timing quite well. When the music was playing, they were happy to listen and watch as the dancer beamed and glorified her Creator. The second time the music stopped, the congregants sang the missing words…the third time, they filled in at higher decibels and, finally, when there was no doubt that audibility was destined to be spotty, the parishioners sang along loudly as the girl continued her routine fearlessly.

The support that I witnessed in that hot, crowded room was amazing! It was a kind that I don’t recall seeing very often. Despite the fact that many of these congregants had never met before and were new to the church, their compassion overcame their pride. It was joyful to be there when they silently agreed to encourage one little child with the only thing they had handy; their voices.

If we strive to make every moment worth something as we spin through space, I propose that we use the majority of our time to encourage and inspire others. What good is your talent if you keep it to yourself? What good is my talent if I hide it for fear of being ridiculed? In her popular composition that has stood the test of time, two portions from Dorothy Law Nolte’s famous poem are “A child who is criticized learns to condemn…A child who is encouraged learns to be confident.” Share your enthusiasm and encouragement with someone who needs it today. It may be a surprise that the one helped the most may just be YOU!

Life definitely has its share of pitfalls, broken sound systems, flat tires, and overwhelming bills. But it is also full of friends we know and those we’ve yet to meet. Every day has a rainbow waiting behind a cloud that first has to dump its foreboding bounty before revealing the amazing prismatic wonder hiding behind it.

“Encourage each other daily, as long as it is called Today” – Hebrews 3:13