Related to the previous post about seeing the best in our kids, today’s practice is about seeing the best in others. You know, that one teacher who seems to pick on your child unnecessarily? Yep. Seeing the best in her. Or how about that cashier at the store who just yelled at your child for spinning by the chicken display? Yep. Her too. Or the family member who seems to know what’s best for your child ALL.THE.TIME? Yes. Even him.
This practice of being grateful for those who make us crazy is certainly not my strongest character quality. In fact, I have to literally bite my tongue in certain conversations. And in particular when it is something my kid is sharing with me about that person.
Gratitude for the growth
I have included this in our gratitude practice this month to show that we all have people in our lives who we connect more easily with. But it is the folks who we maybe don’t connect as easily with that allow us the most growth. How can I find what is good in even the hardest of places? Because if I can do that and genuinely share what about that person I am grateful for (to my kids!), then I am modeling a great skill for them to use later.
Maybe we aren’t getting the best of them
The other part of this that I know is important is to realize that I may not be getting the best of that person. You know how sometimes you have an “off” day and then snap unnecessarily at someone? Or how something is just bothering you and then you say something way more negative than you really mean?
Pause for the option of forgiveness and grace
I am reminded today that sometimes that might be what we get from the people who make us crazy. What if we caught them at just that moment? I would want forgiveness from others if they saw that part of me. And I am sharing this to hold myself accountable to that same forgiveness.
Seeing the best in others means I have to pause to get beyond my initial reaction/judgment of them. Push beyond the annoyance to see their gifts. Then, I will choose to see those gifts and call them out – rather than the annoyances that may be just a glimmer of who that person really is.
For every teacher, coach, mentor, family member, friend, pastor, community member. Find their good and let’s share gratitude with our kids about it!