Wednesday, January 28, 2009

A Hand-Written Note

"I...am writing this with my own hand."
Philemon 1:19
"But encourage one another daily, as long as it is called Today, so that none of you may be hardened by sin's deceitfulness."
Hebrews 3:13
Ever since I was a very young girl, I have loved collecting stationery. I love note pads, greeting cards and writing paper. I could get lost in a card store for hours! Still, a lovely stationery and greeting card store excites me...beyond even a unique clothing boutique!
As I look back now, I believe that, even as a young gal, God was graciously cultivating Himself in me as a lover of encouraging and as one who so deeply appreciates being encouraged. I love sending hand-written notes to family and friends. Even in this age of instant cyber communication, texting and e-mailing, there is nothing as meaningful as a hand-written note.
E-mails are a daily part of my life, and I appreciate the convenient and efficient correspondence they provide. However, the joy of opening the now almost-nostalgic "snail mailbox" and finding a colorful envelope with your name hand written on it is simply delightful. When I open the snail mailbox and see a personal note or card, my day is brightened. God has often used someone to send me a note at just the right time. His love and care has regularly been expressed personally through hand-written notes.
There is just something special about sending or receiving a hand-written note on pretty paper. In his writings, Paul was known for declaring that he was handwriting the letters he authored (at least handwriting a portion of each letter personally) with his own hand. He would often write, "I Paul am writing this with my own hand." It gave the letter authenticity and that personal, special touch. As with our own hand-written notes, Paul's own handwriting signified his sincere love and care for the people to whom he was writing.
Personal, hand-written notes will always be a treasure, no matter how much our world of communication is taken over by cyber-exchanges.
Heartfelt sincerity and love are so beautifully expressed by a hand-written note.
Pray and ask the Lord if there is someone He would like you to encourage through a hand-written note today. Include a favorite scripture verse. Pray for that person and place that hand-written envelope in your out-going mailbox today! Your hand-written note will be an encouragement to the recipient.
PS -- I like to even send my husband and children hand-written notes in the mail! :) (Much better than all the bills and junk mail we all find in our snail mailboxes!)

"I am sending him to you for the express purpose that...he may encourage your hearts."
Colossians 4:8
"We have different gifts, according to the grace given us. If a man's gift is prophesying, let him use it in proportion to his faith. If it is serving, let him serve; if it is teaching, let him teach; if it is encouraging, let him encourage; if it is contributing to the needs of others, let him give generously; if it is leadership, let him govern diligently; if it is showing mercy, let him do it cheerfully. Love must be sincere. Hate what is evil; cling to what is good. Be devoted to one another in brotherly love. Honor one another above yourselves."
Romans 12:6-10

6 comments:

Rachel Olsen said...

As a recipient of some of your sweet hand-written notes, I can attest to the fact that you are an encourager for sure!

Thanks for being "you" so well!

Joyful said...

Sharon, I read this post early this morning, but had no time to comment. You have written my heart. I am a note-sender and letter-writer. I too spend hours in a card shop and have bins - literally - full of stationery and cards. Nothing like receiving or sending a personal, hand-written note. I eagerly anticipate my walk to the mailbox every day, hoping that a treasured few words might be tucked inside. We often joke that my car doesn't know how to go anywhere without first stopping at the mailbox to send some notes of encouragement and love off to precious friends.

I want to share a few quotes with you that I'm sure you'll enjoy.

"The pleasure of a letter received, words transferred from heart to pen, makes an ordinary day a special occasion." Author unknown.

"What cannot letters inspire? They have souls; they can speak; they have in them all that force which expresses the transports of the heart; they have all the fire of our passions. They can raise them as much as if the persons themselves were present. They have all the tenderness and delicacy of speech, and sometimes even a boldness of expression beyond it." Heloise to Abelard

"It is the immemorial privilege of letter-writers to commit to paper things they would not say: to write in a more grandiose manner than that in which they speak: and to enlarge upon feelings which would be passed by unnoticed in conversation." C.S.Lewis

"A letter is a soul, such a faithful copy of the beloved voice which speaks, that fragile souls count it among love's most precious treasures." Honore De Balzac

These are all quotes I treasure and I could just go on and on, but I will close with this, "Neglect not the gift that is in thee..." (From 1 Timothy).

Nice to know you are a kindred spirit. What a delight I know I'd have in spending time with you.
Love & prayers,
Joy

Vanessa said...

Sharon
I too am a lover of handwritten notes and believe it is one of the most powerful encouragement tools out there. Check out the scripture note cards I've created ... would love your thoughts!
Vanessa
http://profitsinprogress.com/store/scripture/

Chatty Kelly said...

I too am a fan of the handwritten note. I wrote about the postman yesterday, and tomorrow I am writing a small note about my love of letters. I think you & I are kindred spirits my friend!

Mommahen said...

A kindered spirit you are indeed! I loved sending cards so much I began making my own. For the longest time I would still buy a birthday card to go with gifts. Then I had a friend tell me, I like YOUR cards better! It put me over the moon. I love the feeling of knowing someone else will be encouraged by the words I write.

I just recently discoverd that my grandfather found a mass in his lungs. I am praying for him everyday, and I am sending him a note to let him know that very thing.

Kimberly said...

Hi!
I saw your comment at Lysa's and had to come by! I am a words of encouragaement kind of gal who also LOVES writing and receiving notes!

My husband loves to tease me about the cards I am always buying just in case I want to send a card to someone. :) Of course, I really need to take Lysa's challenge and start doing better about writing notes. I way too often formulate them in my head and never get them sent.

Thanks for your encouragement, as well, to share love through handwritten notes.

Blessings!
Kimberly :)