One trait that I do not naturally have is that of habitually uplifting others by my company. I can tend far too much to the sober, reflective side of things. And as valuable as I do believe it is to help influence others to do more sober reflection in their lives, that is not the only positive influence that I want to have on people. I have come to see that it is also very valuable indeed simply to cheer others up by my company. We should be uplifting people. And I hope we realize that this is more and more valuable as it is practiced in a deeper and deeper way. The more superficial the cheer is, the less lasting value it has.
As sad as it is to confess, I think I have been almost hesitant in the past to try to cheer people up. Why would that be? I had so emphasized the need for people to come to their sober senses that I lost sight of the other elements of life. I thought my only job was always to correct and instruct and teach in a serious way that would bring sober change. I still believe that we need a good heavy dose of sobriety in our culture, some good deep meditation and reflection. But I also see that many people sometimes need some positive encouragement and uplifting. In fact, we all need that at times, don’t we?
I do want people to help me soberly think in life. But I also value those people whose presence comforts and cheers me. That is a great blessing, isn’t it? And the truth is that not everybody has that effect on a regular basis, do they?
If I delight in the company of those who cheer and uplift me, maybe I should work to be that sort of person to others. That might make sense, don’t you think?
This is one way I can evaluate myself: What impact do I have on people when I am around them? When I spend time with someone, are they better off for it? Does my company help them in life? One of the big helps that we can give people is a kind word of encouragement, an uplifting spirit that brings them up and cheers them. That is a valuable thing. Do I do that for people on a regular basis? That is a good testing question for me. I am working to learn more about being an encouraging person.
This doesn’t mean, of course, that encouragement and cheer is the only thing that I should ever bring to someone’s life. Sometimes a friend might need a word from me that is not so “encouraging.” We all need that at times as well. But overall, I hope to be a person that people are glad to see coming their way, someone that people want to be around. That is a good grace that we should all work to develop.