Romans 12:18 Do all you can to live in peace with everyone. (NLT)
How we treat and handle others speaks volumes about who we really are, what we understand, what principles govern us, and how we will be remembered. I started ministering very young, as a matter of fact I was still in High School. I was blessed to be taught and trained by leaders who were governed by a "Family First" mentality. Nearly 20 years later, I can tell you that my most impacting moments have not been preaching before the multitudes nor accomplishing great goals, but rather sharing, loving, and learning with one. There's something about getting away from the crowd and observing the impact, stories, and concerns of one that is so fulfilling and real. I strive to live a life of knowing: a life full of SQ, Social Intelligence; that takes listening, and listening only happens when we value what we're hearing. In a world where we can replace old friends with new friends with the click of a button, we don't see as much value placed on relationships; and God forbid the relationship goes through any storms. Before life made companionship and friendship available with a simple friend request and validated those relationship with an emoji or like, we fought to keep our relationships.
We can spend a lifetime chasing a bucket list or we can spend everyday impacting lives. Life on earth without the people that we pass daily would be empty. Sometimes we feel we can't enjoy life without certain things, but truthfully there would be no quality of life with people. Can you imagine a life filled with everything you've ever wanted and no other person on earth to experience or share it with? That is why I pray, "Lord help me to love Your people. ALL of them." Maybe if we all prayed for help loving others and help seeing the good in others we would spend more time fighting together and less time fighting against one another. The more I understand that life is truly a vapor and I get one chance to leave a lasting, meaningful impression on the earth, the more I embrace the treasures that I encounter on a daily basis. Even the relationships that were filled with turbulence, I pray for peace as soon as possible and reconciliation where possible. Every person walking is hidden treasure whether they/we know it or not. I'm not, at all, saying get rid of your bucket list, but I am saying add "Valuing People" to it.