There are some things that just stay with a man. For me, one of those things was words from my son about thirty years ago. Though his words were not meant to be a rebuke they served that purpose in my life, nonetheless. I can still see the moment in my mind’s eye. I can still feel the sting. What I meant to be a teachable moment for my son became that for me more than him.
I had given David the task of straightening the storeroom. When he finished he proudly showed me what he had done. He had done an excellent job, exactly what I had asked of him. I praised him for his work and watched his chest swell with pride because he had pleased his dad. In an attempt to help him begin to get an eye for details I went on show him one or two small things that he had missed. My attempt to help him crushed him instead. “Dad”, he said, “when you told me that I had done a great job it made me want to work even harder the next time you gave me something to do. When you followed that with what I had missed I thought, I will never be able to please dad so why should I even try.” That moment is as real to me today as it was thirty years ago.
God has placed men and women in our lives and given us the privilege and responsibility to help them grow in Christlikeness. Success is a great motivator. Encouragement serves to motivate others to be more like Christ, to work harder toward excellence.
Hebrews 10:24 English Standard Version (ESV) 24 And let us consider how to stir up one another to love and good works,
Hebrews 10:24 (New Living Translation (NLT) 24 Let us think of ways to motivate one another to acts of love and good works.