Think about how many people you encounter in a single day?
Think about yesterday. Think through everyone you stood in front of and dealt with on any level. The ones who “matter” and the ones who “don’t.”
Wife, children, clerks, baristas, waiters, employees, bosses, co-workers, friends, homeless guy, random person in line beside you.
Here’s a question…
Do you tend to humanize people you encounter?
Or do you tend to dehumanize?
Let me explain…here are some examples of things we can think…
“I just have to get my kid to day camp, I don’t want to talk or think about what he’s saying. I just need to get to work.”
“Lady, I’m just trying to get a cup of coffee from you. Please don’t ask me how I’m doing.”
“Dude, I don’t have time to hear about your car problem. What do you need?”
“I’m in this meeting with my team, but I’m thinking about what’s on my desk waiting for my attention.”
Those are dehumanizing attitudes that drive dehumanizing actions. Lack of eye contact. Lack of attention. Distraction. Self-focus. Agendas.
Here are some examples of humanizing people…
“Jesus reached out his hand and touched the man.”
“As Jesus went on from there, he saw a man named Matthew sitting at the tax collector’s booth.”
“Jesus turned and saw her.”
“Just then his disciples returned and were surprised to find him talking with a woman.”
Jesus humanized people everywhere He went. He valued them. He cared about them. He took the time to focus, make eye contact, pay attention, and engage.
Today, slow down. Focus on the people who may not usually “matter.” Look into eyes. Engage. Care.
Love your neighbor as you love yourself.
Humanize the humans. All of them.
“Do you love me?” He said, “Lord, you know all things; you know that I love you.” Jesus said, “Feed my sheep. —John 21:17b NIV