We might expect to receive a little gift on our birthdays. But gifts that come out of the blue with nothing to prompt the kindness really make an impact. Your gifts or gestures can make a huge impact on those around you – your family, friends, or co-workers.
I recently read a little book for teachers called Teaching Matters by Todd Whitaker and Beth Whitaker. The focus of one small chapter was how teachers or administrators can help lift the spirits of colleagues. Gifts or gestures don’t have to be huge or expensive to make a powerful difference in an individual’s attitude and level of happiness. This can be applied in many different ways.
I have been a recipient of “unexpected happiness” moments. Once, during the Harvest Team training week, our sound guy stopped by the church, found where we were meeting, stepped in, placed an Arby’s bag on the table, and walked out. He smiled without saying much. That group of Harvest guys gobbled down those 15 roast beef sandwiches, and the moment made an impact. Every once in a while, someone still brings it up.
It doesn’t take much to bring about unexpected happiness. As you show other people you are thinking about them, you can lift the spirits of your team, your organization, or your family. What can you do today?
Here are some ideas:
A PASTOR COULD…
- Take the staff out to lunch the week after a heavy season or weekend series.
- Give free concert or game tickets to a ministry leader in the church.
- Send flowers anonymously to the church administrative assistant on behalf of the church.
A WORSHIP PASTOR COULD…
- Send a gift card to the wife and family of a husband who has given lots of extra hours on a big project.
- Provide t-shirts for the worship team.
- Provide special homemade treats for the band or tech team on a Sunday.
A STUDENT MINISTRY PASTOR COULD…
- Take the youth volunteer staff out for pizza.
- Take a trip to visit a recently transitioned college freshman.
- Plan a special surprise for seniors in the group.
A CHILDREN’S MINISTRY LEADER COULD…
- Give each teacher a goody bag for no reason.
- Place a card, signed by all the kids, on the preacher’s pulpit before Sunday.
- Randomly draw a name to receive a “family night care package” which might include things to encourage them to “take a break on us!”
A SUNDAY SCHOOL TEACHER COULD…
- Bring in treats for Sunday School.
- Host an end of year party for the children/students.
- Take a selfie with each child/student and mail them with encouraging notes.
A MOM OR DAD COULD…
- Mail each of their children a letter.
- Plan a special trip to do something free with your child.
- Help redecorate your teenager’s room.
A STUDENT COULD…
- Take up the tray of someone next to you in the cafeteria.
- Pass out little chocolates to your friends for no reason.
- Buy someone a soda or coffee.
A KID COULD…
- Write an encouraging note to your parent and place it on the bathroom counter.
- Knock on a friend’s door and invite them to play.
- Give the best seat in the room to another family member during a movie or TV show.
*If you teach school, I recommend this book: Teaching Matters. Pick up a copy today.
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