A friend of mine put up an insightful Face Book post last week. She made the statement, “People aren’t disposable,” going on to express some heart break about friends and family who have stopped talking to her over the years for a variety of reasons. At first glance the statement might seem a little dramatic. However, I haven’t been able to shake the sentiment since I saw it.
In a world full of social media, email and text communication it is very easy to think we are staying in touch while instead we are more disconnected than ever. We live in world where it is easy to tell someone bad news in written form and sign it with a sentiment like, “I’m so sorry,” or “I hope it works out,” and then be done with it. We feel good that we reached out and made our peace without really contemplating how the other person might feel. It’s very easy to post pictures of our kids looking happy, our Christmas tree and decorations and everything else while at the same time we are at home falling a part.
This season, especially for us in ministry has simply been too busy. I try every single year to spend time reflecting on the true “Reason for the Season,” yet I also realize at some point that I do it with one eye on my “to do list.” Even in that I have found it is very easy to remember Christ, while forgetting others.
I think we have to be very careful as we “do ministry” these last few days before Christmas to not push others aside as we finish up programs, services, and the perfect outreach.
In these last moments before the holiday how do we let people know they are from disposable?
Remember It’s About The People Not The Polish:
There is always an immense pressure this time of year to pull off those Christmas activities with excellence. It can feel like every church is in competition with the one next door to get the “Chr-Easter,” attenders through the door. A local mega church hires a donut chef to make hot fresh, donuts for every attender on Christmas Eve, and the truth is the 500 member church on the corner can’t keep up with that. Nor should they have to. The heart behind the donuts is for every person to feel well cared for, as they also have loads of volunteers greeting attendees at every corner. It’s not about the best presentation, if someone walks away feeling loved extravagantly it is what shines why Jesus came to earth for our sake.
Don’t Miss Those Hiding In Your Midst
It’s easy to know the person who just went through a crisis needs a little extra love that is in your midst. We know to reach out to the student whose parents are newly divorced and this is the first Christmas to figure that out. Yet, there are people hiding among you that are deeply discouraged. They might be just a little more distant than at other times of the year. Maybe there is a bit more sadness behind the eyes. It’s easy as we attempt to accomplish so many things to forget to notice. Take the time to stop long enough to notice ALLl those who might need love this season.
Take Some Time For Someone
Chances are like me there is someone (or some people) in your world you haven’t heard from in awhile. Is there an old friend that just fell out of communication with you? Is there an acquaintance you have been wondering about? You may have already sent out the picture card of your family but that doesn’t mean it’s too late to engage. If you can make a moment for a cup of coffee, then do it. If there’s no time for even a phone call at least make the email or text a conversation. It doesn’t take long to go back and forth and catch up with those we are thinking abou this holiday season.
My friend is right, people are not disposable. Among us there are friends, family, forgotten aquaintances, and even those we disagree with who need us to reach out. If God could send his Son, to earth, as promised, as a baby just like us, solely for the purpose of righting the broken relationship between the Lord and His Created, and this is the season we dwell on it, then I think that He cares more about his people than all we have to get done. Take the next few days and then start the new year out right: Love your neighbor entirely as yourself.
How have you been reaching out this Christmas season?