One Sunday morning in church an African-American lady sat down on the row in front of me with her two teenage daughters and preteen son. I had never met this family in the church before and did not know if they were regular attenders or not. During the “get acquainted” portion of the service the two girls turned to me and offered a handshake, a smile and a friendly “Good Morning.” I then offered a handshake and greeting to the mother and son.

During the Worship Service one of the daughters was crying, visibly moved, either by the music and worship or by something she was dealing with in her heart. The mother and other daughter put their hands on her back, giving her loving strokes as they continued to worship. I watched as the boy would look over with concern on his face toward his sister. I was impressed by the amount of care and compassion this little family displayed.

When the service was over I reached forward and touched the mother’s shoulder. “Is this your family?” I asked, trying to develop a conversation. She smiled big and replied, “Yes, these are my 2 daughters and my son.” I said, “You sure do have a sweet family.” Tears welled up in her eyes as she said, “Thank you.” I went on, “You’re doing a great job raising these kids. I can tell by the way they care about each other.” I don’t know all that transferred from my lips to her ears and into her heart at that moment, but tears began to flow down her cheeks as she repeatedly replied, “Thank you, Thank you. You don’t know how much a single mother needs to hear that.” I didn’t know that she was a single mother… but God did. I gave her a big hug and we parted ways, but I left with this thought in my mind and heart: Never underestimate the power of an encouraging word spoken at just the right moment.

Proverbs 16:24
Pleasant words are as an honeycomb, sweet to the soul, and health to the bones.

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