Our daughter learned to knit this year and wants to make gifts for a couple of her cousins. I noticed one of the craft stores in town was having a sale on yarn so I stopped by to get her some.
The checkout line was very long as everyone else was there to take advantage of the great deals. I noticed an older gentleman, wearing a cowboy hat, arms full of yarn and material standing in line. I thought it strange because I’ve never known a burly cowboy who knitted or sewed in his free time.
He was chatting with the ladies behind him. A few minutes later I noticed he had made his way down the line as the next person in line moved to the cash register. He wasn’t shopping for himself; he was holding the place in line for his wife.
No long after that, he was in front of me, “I’m waiting for my beautiful wife. She needed to get some thread. I hope you don’t mind me waiting here.”
Awww…he still calls her beautiful.
“She forgets things a lot but she’s the sweetest woman I know. I’m so lucky to be married to her.”
He gushed on and on about her and then he told me that haven’t been married that long. Oh…that explains all the praise!
“We’ve only been married 56 years!”
“It’s worked for us because we focus on each other’s positive qualities.”
“Next in line!”
Argh! I had to leave him, it was my turn but those brief minutes the cowboy left me with a good reminder, a principle that I need to apply in every relationship (especially as we enter the stressful holiday season).
Focus on the positive qualities in each person. We all have aggravating things about our personalities but there is plenty of good in each of us too. Everyone brings something positive to the table that enriches our lives.
So, as the holidays continue to roll around the annoying aunt (the one who says you’d be pretty if you’d lose some weight) sits next to you at the table – focus on the positive traits in her – even if you have to dig deep.
Be generous with them like my cowboy friend by saying them out loud to her and to others. We all need to need to be reminded at times of the good that lies in us.