It's a simple question we ask or is asked to us probably several times a week: How are you? And how do you answer? "Fine." "Good." "Great!" And how do the people answer that you ask? The same. Most probably all of them answer the same.
But this past Saturday when I spoke at Enid, the sweet lady with the closing remarks told us about how she had been feeling bad. She was having tests run for her various aliments and pain, and it was worrying her. She wasn't good. She was tired of saying she was good because she wasn't, so as she prayed to God about it, she made a vow to Him that the next person who asked, "How are you?", she would tell them the truth. And she did!
The lady laughed and said she didn't specify to God that she would prefer it to be a woman, because the next person that asked her was a greeter at the door on her way to Bible class one Sunday morning. He opened the door and asked, "How are you?" And he got an ear full! But, she said he listened to her and it helped her! She said it actually changed their relationship, which was already really good. And he even called to check on her the next week and find out how she was doing. She knew he was praying for her and that he cared about her. That caring heart - that listening ear - that remembering her...made all the difference in the world. It meant that someone cared about her and really cared how she was doing.
Think about that question as you go throughout your day. When you ask, "How are you?" Do you REALLY want to know or are you just chit chatting? If someone told you how they really were, would you take the time to listen or feel like they had intruded on your time. Are you in too big of a hurry to listen and care? Do you take the time to call or text and ask someone how they are doing?
HURRY IS THE KILLER OF KINDNESS.
The lady said that she had been praying and trying to focus on having intentional relationships. I love that!! We use the phrase "intentional parenting" on our Facebook parenting page, so that word is important to us. BE INTENTIONAL. Don't be superficial. Be real. Get to know people. Get to caring about people. Really, really care how they are doing. And act on it.
His divine power has given us everything we need for life and godliness through our knowledge of him who called us by his own glory and goodness. Through these he has given us his very great and precious promises, so that through them you may participate in the divine nature and escape the corruption in the world caused by evil desires. For this very reason, make every effort to add to your faith goodness; and to goodness, knowledge; and to knowledge, self-control; and to self-control, perseverance; and to perseverance, godliness; and to godliness, brotherly kindness; and to brotherly kindness, love. For if you possess these qualities in increasing measure, they will keep you from being ineffective and unproductive in your knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ. But if anyone does not have them, he is nearsighted and blind, and has forgotten that he has been cleansed from his past sins. 2 Peter 1:3-9