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December 9, 2013, 10:28 AM

Making People feel Valuable Part IV

I believe today’s thought is especially pertinent in view of the holiday season.  Sometimes Christmas doesn’t always feel like the “most wonderful time of the year” when we are rushing from one place to the other, trying to meet people’s expectations, and trying to pack our days with good times and make memories.  Today, we’ll continue on with our series on Making People Feel Valuable with a glimpse into Jesus’ interaction with a particular woman.

Nugget:  Slowing down & listening communicates care and value.

We need to slow down so we can remember that people are what really matters to God.  People last forever.  Sometimes in on busyness, we view people as problems, interruptions, inconveniences.  Parenting, like relationships, is rarely ever opportune or convenient.

If you're like me, you tend to fill every time slot during the day.  Slowing down means building margin into your schedule so when Murphy shows up, the “unexpected” comes along, you are not overwhelmed and unprepared, freaking out. Building margins of time into our schedules enables us to respond to the opportunities God brings our way in a manner that helps us value instead of resent people.

In Mark 5, Jesus was on His way to heal Jairus' daughter, who was on her deathbed, when the woman with the issue of blood came out of nowhere and interrupted Jesus' agenda. Ever had a kamikaze, unexpected appointment, emergency, Maalox moment? Jesus could've viewed this woman as a distraction, a time-sucker, an energy-zapper.  But He didn't. He knew power had gone out of Him, He knew what had occurred, but He took time out of His busy schedule to listen to her story. 

33 Then the woman, knowing what had happened to her, came and fell at his feet and, trembling with fear, told him the whole truth. (Mark 5:33,NIV)

Isn't it amazing that the Omniscient One, the God who knows everything, takes the time to Stop, Look, and Listen.  He doesn’t shut us down and say, "You're boring Me" or "I already know" or, “Later.  I'm on my way to heal someone else.”  He takes the time to listen not for himself, but for others.  He gives people His undivided attention.  His attention validates people.

My youngest will sit on my lap, grab my chin, and make me look at her.  She won't proceed to tell me her news, show me her tricks, or giggle until she has my undivided attention.  Sometimes we need to put down the remote, get off our phones, stop “multitasking,” & look at the one’s God has placed in our lives.  We mustn’t sacrifice our family on the altar of a career or even a ministry. Our greatest mission field is our home, our marriage and our children. It does not matter how much we do or how successful we are, if home and family get the leftovers of our time, energy, emotions and spiritual service, we are walking in sin and disobedience.  We are not valuing them.

We need to slow down, savor our relationships and interactions with one another, and listen deeply. What is the other person really saying with their eyes, their body language & their tone?  What are their needs?  Can we meet their needs or connect them with someone who can? Slowing down and really listening communicates care and that you value the other person.

Shaping hearts and minds,

Dr. Chris



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