By Wilma Moody
Mama always said you could catch more flies with honey than vinegar.
The store had a new computer system, and sale items were often rung up at the regular price. It seemed every week I was at the service desk, asking for a refund from the surly lady.
It’s going to take a lot of honey to change that woman’s attitude, I thought. I decided to try the honey/vinegar test on her. But first, I needed to pray about the best way to approach the situation. After my prayer, an idea popped into my head. Everyone loves my crock pot candy. I would make some for the clerk.
I placed half a dozen pieces in a pretty box with a note that said, “Have a Sweet Day.” I told her to let me know if she wanted the recipe. While I was checking out, the clerk came hurrying over. She was smiling! “I definitely want the recipe,” she said. “The candy is delicious.” From then on, she always gave me a smile and encouraged me to come to her anytime I was overcharged.
Since that experiment worked so well, I wondered how I might brighten other people’s lives. Praying brought to mind several people who could use some cheering up.
A teenage girl in our church never smiled. She was smart, but she always hung her head. I baked a huge cookie for her and included a note that said, “You are a Smart Cookie.” From then on, she held her head a little higher.
An elderly lady at church often said she didn’t feel worth two cents. I gave her a gift box with a roll of mints and a note that said, “When you don’t feel worth two cents, just remember you are worth a mint.”
On a cold winter day, I splurged on strawberries in the store. I hurried home and made a pie. I was about to try it when the faces of two elderly couples flashed through my mind. Knowing they could not afford strawberries in the winter, I dished out four nice pieces of pie and took them to the couples. They were elated. One of the ladies hugged me and confessed that during her prayer time, she had voiced a wish for a nice dessert.
I am convinced that people are longing for a gesture of love. On the days when I earnestly pray to be a blessing, I nearly always think of someone who needs some TLC, including those who are hard to love. I don’t know if honey is better for catching flies, but it sure helps when working with people.
Wilma Moody, from Aurora, Mo., and her husband, Vic, have been married for over 60 years. Wilma has written for several publications and is currently writing a book. One of her top priorities is spending time with her 16 grandchildren.
This article first appeared in the November, 2011 issue of Mature Living. To subscribe, click here or on the magazine cover.