Monday, August 31, 2009

Assuming the Worst

Daily Bread once posted a story that should set each one of us to thinking...

One dark rainy night a salesman had a flat tire on a lonely road. But to his dismay he had no lug wrench. Seeing a nearby farmhouse, he set out on foot. Surely the farmer would have a lug wrench, he thought. But would he even come to the door? And if he did, he'd probably be furious at being bothered. He'd say, "What's the big idea getting me out of bed in the middle of the night?" This thought made the salesman angry. Why, that farmer is a selfish old clod to refuse to help me. Finally the man reached the house. Frustrated and drenched, he banged on the door. "Who's there?" a voice called out from a window overhead.

"You know good and well who it is," yelled the salesman, his face red with anger. "It's me! And you can keep your old lug wrench! I wouldn't borrow it if it was the last one in the county."

Why do we get our preconceived notions about people and situations? It seems that we get so concerned about how we may be perceived or treated by others, that we never give them a chance to decide for themselves. Why don't people build relationships with some of their fellow Christians? Why don't people share the gospel? Why don't we know our neighbors better? One of the reasons is because we often think the worst thing is going to happen, or we decide that it is not worth the risk.

Could you ever imagine Jesus making any of these statements:

  • "I would go to your house, but I don't want my motives to be misunderstood."
  • "I would help you, but I am not sure if you will change."
  • "I would teach and lead, but there will be some who will not follow."
  • "I would die, but most of them will not believe."
Doing the right thing is never about what someone else may or may not do. Extending ourselves to others will never become a common practice for us unless we assume that people are worth while. It is not in the result that we trust, but rather in the method. Believe in people. Look for the good in them. You may be pleasantly surprised.

"And so find favor and high esteem In the sight of God and man." ~ Proverbs 3:4

1 comment:

  1. I like to think of the best. Mostly it happens if I do.