Courtesy…. It’s Not So Common!
During my second year of nursing school our professor gave us a quiz. I breezed through the questions until I read the last one: “What is the first name of the woman who cleans the school?”
Surely this was a joke. I had seen the cleaning woman several times, but how would I know her name? I handed in my paper, leaving the last question blank.
Before the class ended, one student asked if the last question would count toward our grade.
“Absolutely,” the professor said. “In your careers, you will meet many people. All are significant. They deserve your attention and care, even if all you do is smile and say hello.”
I’ve never forgotten that lesson. I also learned her name was Dorothy.
Joann C. Jones
The other day I was bending over to pick up something I had knocked down at what is, perhaps, my favorite shopping destination…… Wally World, also known as Wal-Mart. Now any of you who know me, know that I am very hard to miss. I am not a twig by any stretch of the imagination. So picture (or perhaps you really don’t want to picture… LOL) me bending over to pick up something that fell off a hanger. Well let me think…. does the phrase “the broad side of a barn” resonate with you? Well anyway, suddenly, and without any warning, a young boy who was racing through, between and under the racks of clothes, suddenly encountered me, almost taking me down with the efficiency of am NFL defensive tackle! He stopped a second, looked at me accusingly as if I had deliberately planted myself in his way, and continued racing “pell-mell” through the racks. I never saw him again nor did I see his mother or father anywhere near. But my very first thought was…. OK, my first thought was “if only you were my child”! But my second thought was, what has happened to good, old-fashioned, common courtesy? Have we as a civilization become so self-absorbed with our own lives and problems that we have forgotten everything about not just exhibiting good manners by our actions, but also teaching those very same lessons to our children? R-E-S-P-E-C-T! Aretha Franklin had it right. We all need to take a long hard look and find our just exactly what those letters mean to us!
Common courtesy and respect are about as close to being kissing cousins as any two words could possibly be. And they are also two words that have seemed to vanish with the passing years, just as mysteriously and suddenly, as have the bees. Now I live in the south, and while we teach our children down here to answer everyone, friend and stranger alike, with “yes ma’am” and “no sir”, we seem to forget with the follow through where we reinforce the words with the actions! Give this a thought for a moment. No matter where you travel throughout the world, even when you do not know the language, you still know (or should know) how to demonstrate respect and courtesy through your very actions! I once read the following phrase and it has stuck with me ever since….”Courtesy is the one passport that will be accepted without question in every land, in every office, in every home, in every heart in the world.”
Perhaps the greatest commandment of Jesus is found in the New Testament. Mark 12:30-31 NIV says: Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.’ The second is this: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no commandment greater than these.” But it is one thing to read it and quite another to live it. But no matter how often and how loudly I say the words, I can not teach them and what they mean to your children. It is your responsibility as parents, to start these lessons in the place where all learning should begin……your home. If you wait until your children reach the age where they have entered school or begun Sunday School, it is already too late. Love and respect God. Love and respect ourselves. Love and respect others. It is in how you teach these that will forever define the person your child will be as he follows his pathway through life! So take a moment, and make sure you are starting him or her in the right direction!
She opens her mouth with wisdom, and the teaching of kindness is on her tongue.
Proverbs 31:26 NIV
Copyright © 2011-2014 “MandysPath” Ministry