1 Corinthians 11:1-16; 2 Kings 4; Amos 9
“How ya doing?” We ask that question never expecting an honest answer. The story is told of a lady at a reception who wanted to show the scant attention paid to others when they asked that question and responded each time with the phrase, “Oh, I’m dying. How are you?” During the whole reception only one or two people caught what she had said. Elisha had delivered news of a great blessing to a woman who had blessed him. She would have a son. The child died one day and the mom made a beeline to Elisha. Elisha, sensing the trouble – she had never come to him before – sent his servant to meet her. “Please run now to meet her, and say to her, ‘Is it well with you? Is it well with your husband? Is it well with the child?’ And she answered, ‘It is well.’” (2 Kings 4:26) She refused to deal with the servant, put him off with the standard answer and dealt only with Elisha. To make a long story short, Elisha went to her house and a great miracle occurred as the child was brought back to life. If Elisha had taken the answer to his servant at face value, he never would have gone. If Elisha had brushed the woman off and not paid attention to what was really happening, he never would have known the problem. As we seek to show the world how much our God loves them, we need to begin by listening to them. That means really paying attention to them and not just letting their words hit our ears. How often are we contemplating what we will say next when someone else is talking rather than pay attention until we find out what’s really happening. I wonder how our relationships would change if our response to “fine” or “ok” would be something like, “No, seriously. I want to know. How are you doing?” We might be able to have some amazing, healing conversations.
Lord, how quickly I accept convenient lies when I speak to others. How quickly do I tell them. Help me to love others as You do and take the time to find out enough about them to help meet their needs. Give me grace and strength as I seek to minister to them.