We live in a crazy, busy, fast-paced world. We rarely stop long enough to be real with ourselves let alone be real with others or even further let others be real with us.
I seem to be at the right place at the right time quite often. One kids’ camp night, I was playing four square with a group of high-schoolers when I saw one friend suddenly stop playing and sit down in a chair looking at her phone. The expression on her face said it all. I immediately tossed the ball across the square and motioned for the next person to step into my place. I walked toward her and sat down beside her. I asked a couple questions about what was wrong, and she quickly let out every detail. I had a very similar past scenario to share and how I was delivered from it.
People just really need others to be present for them. They need to talk, and they need someone to listen. It is not about having all of the answers. I am far, far from having all the answers. It is about turning off the phone, momentarily forgetting about your to-do list, and loving your neighbor well. There are not enough people in the world who are willing to stop what they are doing for a few moments to lend a listening ear.
It means the world when someone lets you know that they are here for no other reason than to be here. Sometimes it is harder than it sounds. Everyone’s hard is different. For me, it was another situation during camp week, and I was are already exhausted from counseling a camp the previous week. I could get 7 hours of sleep, but I had a deep feeling (you know that one where you can hardly breathe) in my heart that some of my younger friends needed to tell their hearts. I slept 3 hours that night, and I do not regret it one bit.
I do not believe my words have ever been the solution to anyone’s problems, but I do believe being open is obeying Jesus’s push. Jesus put His priorities on being 100% relational. I want to do the same. People mattered to Jesus, and they should matter to us. Our people are hurting way more than we know from the surface level facade. Yet, if we are willing to just give a piece of our time to our fellow human beings, it could change their lives.
I pray that we will be a people who are willing to give up a little bit of our time here and there to be present for others. We know You chose human beings as the messengers of Your love, and we could not be more elated to be given such a task. I pray that we will always have the Gospel on our lips and will always be ready to share our great gift. May we be patient with others, as they may take weeks, months, or even years to receive Your Truth. Do not let us become weary of doing Your work, but may we receive our energy, joy, and strength from loving You and loving others. We long to hear You say “well done my good and faithful servant”. Thank you for sending Jesus and giving us abundant life.
In Jesus’s name,