Monday, June 12, 2017

Being Gracious

I read Gracious by Kelly Williams Brown a couple of months ago. Even though the book derailed onto unrelated topics, its main focus was on how to be gracious. Reading it has made me be more conscious of graciousness in my own daily life.

I feel like I was more gracious to others when I was younger. As time has gone on, more prickles have grown on my back. I am not as patient with people. I don't always remember to thank others for the kind things they do. I don't forgive other people's faults, and I get irritated way more than I should.

Here are a few things I noted from this book:

1. Find a way to become comfortable in your own skin and use that security to make everyone else feel comfortable too.

2. Be focused on others - not yourself.

3. Pause before reacting.

4. Behave well, no matter what is going on around you.

5. If you are gracious and polite, other people will help you.

6. When making small talk with someone, be genuinely curious about them and let them talk.

7. Be kind even when you don't feel like it.

8. Stay serene and sensible in a world that is neither.

The opposite of being gracious is being rude and crude. I certainly don't want to be that! But it can also mean being selfish, disrespectful, self-centered, irritable, and sarcastic. Even though I am not these things on a regular basis, I occasionally catch myself being them.

When I pay attention, I can let the mom with little children go ahead of me in line, I can smile and say hello to the Walmart greeter, I can politely decline a request to sign up for another credit card, and I can give the better seat away to someone else.

Psalm 145:8 says, "The LORD is gracious and compassionate, slow to anger and rich in love." I pray I can extend the same grace and compassion to others that God has shown to me.

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