In 1896, Henry Ford attended a company event where Thomas Edison (the great inventor) was the guest of honor. His friend introduced him to Edison as “the man trying to make a car that runs on gasoline.”
Edison asked young Henry Ford a host of questions and when the talk was over, Edison banged his fist down on the table and said, “Young man, that’s the thing! You have it! Your car is self contained and carries its own power plant.”
Years later, Ford, reflecting on their first meeting, said in a newspaper interview, “That bang on the table was worth worlds to me. No man up to then had given me any encouragement. I had hoped that I was headed right. Sometimes I knew that I was, sometimes I only wondered, but here, all at once and out of a clear sky, the greatest inventive genius in the world had given me complete approval. The man who knew most about electricity in the world had said that for the purpose, my gas motor was better than any electric motor could be.”
I would have loved to hear that conversation. Two powerful men talking innovation and creation. Both on the road to changing the world. One, established in the field of electricity, the other, seeking to invent what is today, the mainstay of personal and public transportation.
The old story is a new reminder of the power of encouragement. When someone encourages you, you are brought to a new level of hope. When someone lifts you up, you are given a gift that fuels you for the next phase of the journey. When you encourage others, you imitate the power of God.
I’m praying that you are awakened to someone who needs encouragement today. I’m praying that you too can have someone bang their fist and encourage you in what you are doing and who you are becoming.
“The lips of the righteous nourish many, but fools die for lack of sense.”