If You Have Something Nice to Say

This past weekend at church, I sat a few rows behind a friendly married couple that we've known, at least on an acquaintance level, for years. Their adult daughter and son-in-law arrived a few minutes later and sat beside them. I loved the greeting that ensued: warm hugs, the mom rubbing her daughter's back, huge smiles. Such tangible displays of affection.

I've noticed this about this family before. They love each other. They like each other. It shows.

On the back of my bulletin, I scrawled a little note to my husband, "The bond between members of that family always warms my heart. So evident how much love there is!"

He read it and nodded. He had noticed, too.

After service, I waited for the woman and handed her the note, telling her, "I just wanted you to see your family how others see you."

Then I went on with my day. Honestly, I didn't think of the encounter again until I noticed that she had tagged me on Facebook with a picture of my messily written note and this message: 

A sweet friend handed this to me on our way out of church. It’s probably the nicest thing anyone has ever said about our family. So appreciated. Made my year!!!

My heart! Do you know how simple it was for me to pass this note to her? It was such a small thing! And yet, it clearly was meaningful to her.

We all know the adage, "If you don't have anything nice to say, don't say anything at all." But this small encounter reminds me that the opposite corollary might be equally important: If we have something nice to say, say it.

We think nice things about people all the time. Once again, I'm reminded that it never hurts to say it.

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