My girls gave me a huge gift several years ago. They were home from college one week and they asked me a question that caught me by surprise. They asked,
"What can we do for you while we're home?"
They wanted to delight me. They wanted to serve me. They wanted to see me smile with happiness.
Oh, I smiled all right! They listed potential projects they knew I'd been wanting to get to but lacked the time and energy, but I knew immediately what I wanted to do with them.
Spruce up my bedroom.
I'd been eyeing a romantic paint color for quite some time, but painting is kind of a big job and well, I'm pretty tired by the time I finish working on other people's projects and just hadn't been able to set aside the time.
Those girls whipped into gear. They pulled the furniture out and prepped the room. They stared at the paint chips with me (I couldn't QUITE decide on the exact shade) and offered their opinions. They acted like there was nothing they'd rather be doing than helping me paint my bedroom.
They made me feel loved.
I finally decided on Sherwin Williams "Fashionable Gray" (a lavender gray) and within 4 hours we had knocked it out and put the furniture back in place. Lauren even spray painted my "80's Ugly" headboard a slick black and breathed new life into it. We listened to a Miss Marple mystery on itunes as we worked and laughed and talked.
It was an afternoon to remember.
It's not often that someone really asks you from their heart how they can serve you. It makes you feel wonderful and special to be asked. And it goes straight to your soul when they act like they have nothing better to do than do something that makes you happy. I'll never forget it.
Today's Small Thing is to ask someone what you can do for them.
Think carefully who you'd like to ask and make sure you'll be able to follow through on it. As importantly as the task itself is the attitude that goes with it. Serving with joy blesses a person like nothing else. And it binds your hearts together in a very special way. I floated high from my daughters' actions for a long, long time. And I still enjoy seeing my lavender gray walls, six years later.
Little note: Sometimes, it feels like all we do is serve others. Serve, serve, serve. Blech. But there is a difference between servitude and serving. Servitude is being enslaved to someone or something more powerful than yourself. Serving, on the other hand, is a choice from the heart - a gift that helps, empowers, frees, and loves others. Don't you love that?
How will you serve today?