Like much of the world I’m thinking about the Olympics today. I love how it brings people and countries together regardless of language, location, sex or economic status. It’s a chance for all kinds of people to show their particular athletic abilities and show off some country pride too. Events like the Olympics are a chance for the world to put aside differences and disagreements and instead focus on encouraging each other and raising each other up.
Yes, there is a sense of pride for those who win, both the people and their country, but it’s fun to celebrate all winners because regardless of where you and they call home, as they’ve accomplished a feat that most of us couldn’t begin to do whether it be swimming so fast, running so far or hitting a target. Plus you’ve got all of the challenges the athletes have had to overcome and victories they’ve had to achieve in their personal lives to get to this point.
It’s important to share our gifts and talents with the world, and just as important to recognize the good things each of us can do. It’s such a simple thing to tune in to the Olympics, to cheer at a little league game or celebrate when your kids get a good grade, but it’s so important to not only recognize the good they’ve done, but encourage them to continue doing their best.
This week I encourage you to step up in your regular life and recognize the people around you and the gifts they have. Celebrate with them their accomplishments. It may be challenging for you to do if you’re losing out on a position you were hoping to get that they got, or when they got a house when you’ve lost out on several, or got pregnant when you’ve been trying so hard. Sometimes we have to wait (patiently) for our chance to celebrate, other times we’re the first ones celebrating. What will you celebrate this week?
“What a gift it is when we can inspire others to have courage and to hope, when we can raise another’s confidence, when we can instill in them life and energy and vigor. How important it is for us to express care for one another regularly and explicitly, to commend and cherish one another, to work actively to build up [each other] by our words and actions, and not to undermine its health by bitterness and complaining.” Br. David Vryhof