Taking Time to Consider Others posted by jwatson on Mar 08, 2012
This is the second post in the “Chit Chat” series focusing on one of the critical aspects of sharing the good news and making disciples – communicating well. Read Chit Chat #1: Taking Responsibility for Bad Conversations.
Simple mathematics – If you know who you are talking to, you talk better.
We sometimes get the impression that “getting to know someone” takes a long time, and sometimes, it does. But what I’m trying to encourage is that if we are in a situation where we only have fifteen minutes to spend with someone, we could get to know the person proportionally. Let’s be realistic. It is not possible for us to afford the time or energy to be everyone’s best friend, and knowing every individual whom we cross paths with from the inside out. But with whatever window of opportunity we are given, we can certainly try.
What’s a good way to start? Listening, of course. If whoever you’re talking to doesn’t open his or her mouth, you’re not going to get to know the person very much!
What can we gain by listening? Well, you can almost definitely find out, in five minutes, a person’s language proficiency, repeated words, hobby, at least one life philosophy, capability to engage ideas… and sometimes, even snippets of a person’s background and personal issues. Imagine if we had more time! eedless to say, all of these can help us share the good news of Christ in a way that they can comprehend.
Go ahead, try it!
“Men of Athens, I perceive that in all things you are very religious; for as I was passing through and considering the objects of your worship, I even found an altar with this inscription – TO THE UNKNOWN GOD. Therefore, the One whom you worship without knowing, Him I proclaim to you.” Acts 17:22-23
Food for thought: Before proclaiming Christ, Paul took the time to consider the Greeks, and shared the gospel with concepts that they could identify with. Are we willing to do the same, or just get into a conversation and talk and talk and talk and talk and talk and talk… then miss the person’s head and heart entirely?
Let us continue to pray that the Holy Spirit will always quicken us on how to relate to people we meet.