As a teacher, it is important to make connections and build relationships with my students and their families as much as possible. If I want to be able to squeeze as much effort as possible out of each and every student, and push them to their fullest potential, I need them to know that I am doing it because I care about them and their success. Because I take this approach with my flock every school year, I typically don’t have too many major behavior issues, and typically have good relationships with the parents of my students. And by these relationships, I know that students feel comfortable and confident in my classroom to take risks, grow, and learn.
In the same way, we as Christians need to treat other human beings with the same care. If we are to spread God’s love to others, and show others what this Jesus character is all about, we need to start by building relationships and treating others with compassion. By building relationships with people, even non-believers, we can spread God’s love and grace through our own actions. It will be these relationships that bring more people into the church and to the reading and study of scripture, and ultimately to a relationship with Jesus.
My prayer is that those with whom we come into contact will know we are Christians by our love and by our actions. I pray that God will guide us to be compassionate, to have grace and mercy, and to forgive those who do wrong against us. There is too much hate in this world, and life is too short to be so full of hate and anger.