More than 20 years ago, my boss at the time sat down with me one day to explain to me that my expectations for affirmation were apparently too high. "No one is going to send you a dozen roses every time you do your job...."
Ouch. The fact that I recall that comment so vividly and easily all these years later should indicate its effect on me; and I assure you it is not the effect my boss intended.
Every week, I email prayer requests from the rehab ladies to about 15 people who have committed to praying for them. One of the people was a sweet woman who worked at my husband's office. Every week, without fail, she would email me the next day and tell me how pleased God must be with me; that I was fighting the good fight; that I was a blessing; that I inspired her, etc. Well, she is no longer with my husband's company. In fact, I have lost her. And so I find I am really missing her dozen roses.
Does a need for affirmation make us needy? I asked God today to please throw a little encouragement my way with my ministry. I'm feeling a little stretched. I need someone to tell me what I already know, yet seem to need to hear on a regular basis: Well done good and faithful servant.
Of course, I have to pause and ask myself, do I send a dozen roses to people on a regular basis? Mmmmm ... yeah, I think I do. I think the Lord has given me the gift of encouragement. There are times when I shut down into my own little world and forget. Perhaps I need to spend some time today identifying some people I can encourage.
Who knows ... there may be someone out there who really needs a dozen roses right now.