Is it true that people don’t care how much you know until they know how much you care?
This famous quote we have often heard on numerous occasions is attributed to Theodore Roosevelt. But has this made you suspend your thoughts for a moment and consider all the times you acted in a callous manner instead of a caring one?
Are you approachable, available and affirming? Do you have a personal touch?
We know that in Christ’s ministry He tended to the crowds. He reached out to the poor. He had compassion on those who were ill. He embraced the impoverished with His words of redemption and restoration.
Have you set your priority to prepare talks and lead studies?
As Christ spent time commissioning (instructing and empowering) the disciples (Luke 9), He invested time to observe their attitudes and actions. When the disciples became callous (insensitive and unsympathetic to those around them) Jesus stepped in.
Christ stayed in touch with the needs of people. He ministered to the crowds and individuals, because He met their needs in reality (Hebrews 4:15).
The disciples loved the crowds but did they really care about every person as an individual? We know Jesus cared because He fed the five thousand, and when the disciples asked Jesus to send them away He turned the 5 loaves and 2 pieces of fish into one of the greatest miracles in His time of ministry (Luke 9:12).
In week one, how can you foster a caring attitude instead of a callous one? Towards friends, family and strangers that cross your path?
To what degree are you willing to make changes so that you are not indifferent or unfeeling towards those you meet every day?
Here are 7 practical ways to consider in becoming caring…
- Be kind to one another, compassionate, forgiving one another just as God has forgiven you (Ephesians 4:32).
- Put on heartfelt compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience as God’s chosen ones (Colossians 3:12).
- Giving help to the poor is like loaning money to the Lord. He will pay you back for your kindness (Proverbs 19:17).
- Be kindly affectionate one to another with brotherly love; in honour preferring one another (Romans 12:10).
- Do not merely look out for your own personal interests, but also for the interests of others (Philippians 2:4).
- Unfriendly people care only about themselves; they lash out at common sense (Proverbs 18:1).
- The righteous care about justice for the poor, but the wicked have no such concern (Proverbs 29:7).
Do you have stick-to-itiveness?
Setting up new attitudes requires being realistic and persistent to opportunities and possibilities. Purposefulness in modelling positive actions is the key to developing charitable attributes. Moments and occasions necessitate us to build a genuine and confident mental outlook, by adopting both empathy and warm heartedness. This comes from respecting others, but also knowing that encountering rudeness is not acceptable. How you deal with an insensitive and callous perspective, can be as simple as responding in a gracious and gentle manner that is neither condemning nor harsh.
Jesus displayed compassion in all He did. Calling out to those who were weary and burdened with anxiety and cares (Matthew 11:28-30). He saw the distressed and dispirited and felt compassion towards them (Matthew 9:36). He healed their infirmities and diseases (Matthew 8:16-17).
What will it cost you to adjust your temperament?
When we begin to evaluate our life, and move from where we are and the rut we may find ourselves locked into.
- To take stock of our words and behaviour and step away from conflict and arguments, by being sensitive and appreciating others more.
- Paying attention and being polite. Listening and being affectionate. If we treat others in the way we would expect to be treated, then we already have begun the journey towards one that cares and displays compassion.
- Often it is the small compliments and conversation. Apologies and honest confessions that show we value and cherish others. That ditches the callous approach and replaces them with a mindful and tender one.
In week one, how can you change a callous attitude and foster a caring one instead? I would love to hear from you.