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Wanna Influence People?

This fall there have been 3 things that I’ve had happen or observed that are worth stealing if you want to make a difference in the lives of students or families or even your friends.  I can take credit for none of them.  But all of them both inspired and challenged me. 

CALL PEOPLE TO BRAG ABOUT THEM.  No joke.  2 days ago my oldest sons public high school english teacher called the house.  We were not home. So she left a voice mail.  It was not because he missed an assignment or because he had a problem.  It was just because she wanted to brag on him.   Are you kidding me?  
I figured out how to make a voice recording of it on my iphone, but I have no idea how to post it here. But I wrote it down.  Here’s what she said:

Hi, this message is for Mr. and Mrs. Berry.
 This is __________, TJ’s English teacher.  And I’m just calling to let you know what an awesome student your son is.  I like to call parents and give them some feedback on how their kids are doing.  TJ is not only a leader in the class but he’s also a delight.  He has a great sense of humor.  He’s getting an A- in here just a wonderful wonderful boy.  I’d like to commend you and also commend him.  If you have any questions, you can give a call at _______________.  

Ok… so honestly, when was the last time you called a parent to brag about their son or daughter?  Crazy simple.  Crazy impactful.  
TEXT A NOTE:   My wife texts love notes.  My kids small group leaders text the encouragement notes.  You should do this.  I should do this.  It really makes your day.  
What could you text someone and say today that would light up their world and make them smile? 
WRITE STICKY NOTES:  The office across from mine is our college pastor.  Her sister came in and wrote stupid sticky notes on stuff.  Not like annoying 5000 of them on everything.  I had that done to my office once.  More like… one saying “your awesome”. a silly one saying “this is your door”.  And a bunch more. I’m sure it took like 5 minutes and made her day.  It made me smile. 
Go ahead, write a sticky note reminder for yourself to use sticky notes.  The use them in your friends houses, cars, and work places to stick amazingness everywhere.  It will be awesome. 
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Brian Berry is a proven veteran of student ministry. He serves as the generation ministries pastor at Journey Community Church near San Diego, California, where he works directly with the high school ministry and oversees a staff that is responsible for infants through teens. Brian is also a frequent blogger, writes and teaches for youth workers, and is the author of both As for Me and My Crazy House and Criticism Bites. He speaks at various conferences, camps, and retreats for a variety of audiences. He is married to Shannon, and they have five kids.