Thursday, March 1, 2012

Strangely Familiar

I believe the Lord has been touching my heart lately and showing me the flip side of a situation where I have only ever addressed one side.

Normally, I have witnessed and experienced this in ministry situations, but I have also experienced this outside of ministry.
It is this: Newcomers are often left to stand alone, making them feel unwelcomed.

I’m certain we can all relate to this. Can you recall the last time you were the new person or couple at a function? Did you experience uncomfortable moments where others who knew one another congregated in conversation while you were left sitting or standing alone?

Not a nice feeling; one we would hope to avoid at all costs.

Normally, if we tough it out, someone will approach and speak to us. But, it can be unnerving, and often, too stressful for some to endure.

The consequence is normally that the new person never returns, and everyone has lost an opportunity to meet another friend. Everyone loses.

But, who is to blame?

I generally point the finger to the people who are in their comfort zone. I know, often they are not even aware of a new person; they are busily involved in conversation, or whatever.
However, as newcomers, we must anticipate that others will come forward if given time and/or opportunity. Some will not, often because they are uncomfortable approaching those they don’t know. To you, I say, fear is not of God; he calls us out of our comfort zone. Approach and introduce yourself. It will become easier the more often you do it. You will meet some wonderful people.

Yet, there is another side. Often, when the new person/couple depart too soon, have they fairly given anyone an opportunity to come forward and introduce themselves?
We can’t be too hasty while we stand in our stressful place either.

A fly on the wall may know that the initial conversations with those who are already known, must take place. There may be plans being finalized, new issues to introduce in an ongoing matter, or simply a time to catch up.

I am addressing this today because I believe the Lord has put this on my heart, so I am sharing it with you. Maybe you need to hear it as well. If not, thanks for reading my blog today anyway. If you know someone who would benefit from reading it, maybe you would like to forward it on to that person.

I pray that for each of us, we will desire enough to be the change that we wish to see in others; that we will step forward and reach out. Because at the end of the day, it is the love we show to others that enables the Lord to smile down on us.

So, no matter what side you are on; I hope you will be fair and consider the other persons position.

Bless You today!

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