by Jenny Harrison
May these words of my mouth and this meditation of my heart be pleasing in your sight, Lord, my Rock and my Redeemer.
Psalm 19:14 (NIV)
I wish someone had snapped a picture of the stunned look on the faces of my colleagues and me when three employees at a quaint boutique near our hotel/convention site approached us. The designated spokesperson was not shy in her inquiry.
“Each day since your convention started we have observed the hundreds of individuals in your group. Your badges carry the letters ECI, and we have had several discussions in our attempt to figure out what those letters stand for. Just who are you people?”
At the time, I was the speech pathologist for Early Childhood Intervention serving ages birth-3 in a rural region of central Texas that encompassed several counties.
Our ECI team consisted of professionals with years of education and training, but we were certainly not a pretentious bunch as we served our young clients from a rocking chair, high chair, or a pallet on the floor. Those small, precious ones entrusted into our care had a way of keeping us humble and young-at-heart.
The Registered Nurse of our group smiled and responded, “We would be glad to tell you a little bit more about us and our organization, but first, I am certain we are ALL curious to know who you think we are. What do you think the letters on our badges represent?”
With a radiant smile wide enough to brighten the darkest day, the store attendant replied, “Well, we have watched your group laughing, hugging, and sharing kind words with everyone you meet. Not one of the hundreds we have come in contact with from this convention has failed to put a smile on our face and brighten our mood. So after much thought, we came to the conclusion that ECI stands for Extra Cool Individuals.”
The thought of a major hotel in Austin,Texas hosting an annual convention for extra cool people resulted in a burst of spontaneous laughter followed by an exchange of loving sentiments and heartfelt hugs. We were both touched and humbled.
Without a doubt, this conversation will forever be tucked away in my long term memory, and the lesson I learned that evening is permanently etched into my heart.
The lesson I learned is that anyone can make a positive impact on their world by remembering three critical truths:
- The condition of our heart speaks louder than credentials.
- We are not aware of the extent that others notice our attitude and actions. Choose good ones.
- Sometimes in the most unlikely situations, God will use us for His purposes.
Follow God’s example, therefore, as dearly loved children and walk in the way of love, just as Christ loved us and gave himself up for us as a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God.
Ephesians 5:1-2 (NIV)
“You are the light of the world. A town built on a hill cannot be hidden. Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven.
Matthew 5:14-16 (NIV)
Copyright © 2014, Jenny Harrison, all rights reserved, Breath of Life Women’s Ministries. Images from Pinterest. Scripture from The Holy Bible, New International Version.