Life has a fast pace to it and with the tourist season starting here we see much anger expressed at unsuspecting people. It is amazing how many people will get angry on their vacations. I don’t know how many times I have been amazed at the amount of stress and hostility people on vacation have expressed to each other and to innocent bystanders. Even with all of the mis-directed anger, we still can provide a contrast to that by our lives. For most days, we might go about our day and never notice anyone else, but my 5-year-old son will say hi to as many people as he can.
On Wednesday we took a trip to Provincetown with Grandma and Grandpa. As we walked the streets there, my son would randomly say hi to people. Some people would acknowledge him and others would ignore him. One lady stopped and he asked to pet her dog. She agreed and we had a short chat with her. It was not a deep conversation, but it was an opportunity.
As people who follow Jesus, our job is to share Jesus with other people. But, how does that happen if we are so busy that we miss out on people around us? How do we meet the needs of the hurting world, if our eyes are so focused on our own needs and issues?
Many people will object that it is a waste of time to try to interact with people who just ignore you anyway. I would argue that every interaction is an opportunity that should not be wasted. This is, after all, one of the reason I write on this blog. It reaches people and allows me to have interaction with many people. Beyond blogs, what can you do to be more intentional?
This could easily turn into a list of ideas. But, the truth is it isn’t all that complicated. Just like a fisherman has to put his line in the water in order to catch fish, we need to, as fisher of men, put the Word out there in order to have any meaningful interaction with people. You might spend hours fishing and catch nothing. You might put all your energy into gear and finding the right location. There is something that happens, though, even if you have been fishing for 12 hours straight when you finally catch a fish. It invigorates and immediately shows why all that energy has been put into this event.
Our lives do not consist of throw away times. Our interaction with people, while often superficial, can be meaningful. We can make an impact for Christ if we are willing to open our eyes and love the people we come in contact with. You might just be the one piece of encouragement that someone needs. If you need help, my 5-year-old son will be glad to help. It seems to come naturally to him.