Posted by: howvoicebegan | 13/01/2012

A Word of Encouragement

My day planner has a quote at the bottom of each page. They are supposed to be inspirational but I often find they don’t really add value to my day. But, today’s quote jumped out at me: “A word of encouragement during a failure is worth more than an hour of praise after success” (Anonymous).

It reminds me of the difficult task it can be to raise or mentor children. It is easy to praise them for good work but to scold them for their shortcomings. Sometimes I feel all I do is nag at them to get them to behave correctly. There is a time for correction but there is always a time for a loving word.

Our children suffer much. Every word counts.

It becomes even more apparent to me these days as our children come back from the holidays. Many of them get to stay with extended family, but it is always a painful reminder to them that they are not truly wanted, for they end up back at the orphanage. This is a time of year that we need to be sensitive to these children in our corrections and when they feel down.

We have a brother and sister who are both difficult to deal with in their own ways. They came back today not because their extended family dropped them off—instead, their mother abandoned them. Again.

The girl is already doing something I have been working on her with, but I just don’t have the heart to speak negatively at this time. Is correcting a mannerism more important than showing her that somebody cares about her? No, it’s not; we can work on that when she feels loved and accepted here.

We can let a painful past get in the way of raising a child correctly. But for this day and for this time, they need a word of encouragement when they feel like a failure. I’m a failure because if I wasn’t, my family would like me.

Want to let a child know they are loved? Make a short video, upload it on YouTube, and send it to me. I’ll make sure they see it. Contact me for the name of a child to encourage.

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