We know we should love others. The Bible makes it pretty clear. The difficulty however, is in the doing. Therefore, how do we go about loving others in the ordinary day to day activities of our lives? There are dozens of things that could be mentioned in answering this question, but I just want to allude to five.
In his book The Praying Life, Paul Miller asks the question as to whether we can really love someone without praying for them? Prayer is no small thing. It should be the first and foremost activity of loving people. This is why it’s at the top of the list.
The greatest gift you can give someone is your time. This is especially true in our hurry-up-gotta-get-things-done-already-running-late world. So stopping to listen is a huge deal. And the reality is that many around us are starving to have someone listen to them.
Seek To Understand
Seeking to understand others follows right along with listening. It concerns learning to walk in another’s shoes. We are sometimes quick to judge others without knowing their story. Therefore, we do well to remember that behind every face is a story. So seek to learn that story.
Our culture teaches us to be impatient. We have fast-food, high-speed Internet, and over-night delivery. So, being patient with others is not always easy. But being patient is so important. It’s about giving people a break when they make a mistake. Or it’s listening for an extra five minutes. Whatever it is, learn to walk with others at their pace, not the pace you think they should walk.
Be a person of grace. I don’t know if you know this or not, but people make mistakes. And by the way, you are one of those people. So learn to forgive. When you do so, you bring an aroma to the room that seems to freshen everyone.
These five things are not novel concepts, but they can be revolutionary. I dare you to practice them. After all, are these not ways you want to be treated?