We thrive in affirmation. We love to see, hear, feel, even taste (!) affirmation. Nodding heads, commendations, pats on the back, meal treats (!)- they bring us addicting satisfaction and fulfillment. We crave for it, and rejoice in it, whether we admit it or not.
And doubt is sown in the absence of recognition. We anticipate a good word but we don’t get it- “Did I do it properly?” (Is my grammar correct?). We get excited for an answer or a response.. but wait for “ages” (are you referring to a text message Ninang?)- “Is there something I did wrong” (I’m not good enough?). We offer help and a solution, but gets rejected- “Do they think I’m self-serving? Am I offending anyone”. You stay up late and study, but gets criticized instead for the that grade you get- “Is this all I’m worth?” We question our very existence (!).
And more insecurity is produced in a moment of weakness (though all people have it!). In one careless word among a thousand carefully chosen ones.. one thoughtless act in hundreds of prudent decisions.. One bad advise despite the best of assumptions.. A complacent answer from exhaustion.. People judge us (Ignore them!).. People are too quick to point shortcomings.. And just too slow (if ever they actually get there!) to thank or compliment.
So I remember..
A mother who can’t sleep looking after a child who is sick.. A father caught in heavy traffic after a tiring day of work.. A granddad with back pain chasing after his toddler grandkid.. A kind word..
A teacher with meager salary dutifully checking the papers of her pupils.. A head of a government office saying No to a bribe (is this really possible?).. A doctor giving his salary for his patients’ medications..A warm smile..
A slightly slow student diligently studying to keep up with the rest (and at least pass!).. A parent helping his anxious child finish her difficult project.. An earnest prayer..
An honest househelp.. A careful driver.. A patient secretary..
A forgotten faithful friend.. A forgiving enemy (friends na uli!).. A concerned stranger..
A Withheld curse.. Released grudge.. heartfelt praise
A warm touch..
All deserve affirmation and most of the time they get only one.. but The most important one– the Silent Applause of One unseen but Present, inaudible though He speaks, not physical but whose hand touches hearts and lives. May you see, hear, and feel Him.. And taste (!) how good God is! Acknowledge His Silent Applause (Thank you Lord)!!
“Taste and see that the Lord is good;
blessed is the man who takes refuge in him.
Fear the Lord, you his saints,
for those who fear him lack nothing.
The lions may grow weak and hungry,
but those who seek the Lord lack no good thing.” (Psalms 34:8-10)
– Ninang thoughts, expecting Likes from readers (God “Likes” Ninang!!)