While last week was unusually full of stress, this week has been a lot better.
One of the things that made this week better was a visit with a brother named S. He was the one that wasn’t listening last week. Apparently, after we left his wife took him to task, and he was a much different person when we visited on Saturday. S. grew up from having nothing by lots of hard work, and he really wants to have a strong family, and especially for his son to learn the value of work.
In this context, when we were talking on Saturday he said something very thoughtful. He said that he has observed three (nonmonetary) ways he’s seen to motivate. Namely, punishment, experience, and tradition/customs. He said the first and the third don’t seem to work well in producing good results, and the second one is hard. (His son is 10 and he doesn’t want to just wait around before his son starts trying in school; he was telling us how he loses his patience and temper with his son.)
As we were discussing I mentioned that I liked his analysis but I wanted to add to it another motivating factor, namely, love. I said that as we come to understand and feel the love God has for us, it lets us develop the same kind of love for others, which can in turn motivate them for good. It was a wonderful discussion.
Srinivas is my kind of guy – thoughtful, hard-working, caring, extremely intelligent. But he’s never satisfied with life, he always feels a desire for more, usually more stuff (he’s living in a very nice house and building a bigger one) and tells us as much very frankly.
As we’ve visited him these last couple months we and he have started to notice a change in him (again, he’s frank: he’ll tell us this). He doesn’t have something that can fully satisfy him yet, but he’s started to taste of it. It’s wonderful and I’m really happy to be part of it.
PS: The weather is starting to get hot, but slowly. Hyderabad is less humid than Chennai, because it's not on the coast. That should be nice.