In this post, I want to talk about how we can love each other deeply by displaying a Christlike attitude.
As I mentioned in the first post of this series, “the command to love each other deeply is calling us forth and out to display the fruits of the Spirit (love, joy, peace, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control) to all people, at all times, in all ways.”
Displaying a Christlike attitude to all people, at all times, in all ways, is a testament to those around us.
Chuck Swindoll once said, “Words can never adequately convey the incredible impact of our attitudes toward life. The longer I live the more convinced I become that life is 10 percent what happens to us and 90 percent how we respond to it.”
Attitude is everything.
The attitude we portray in the everyday and mundane can make or break the perception a nonbeliever has of Christ. It should be obvious to whom we belong in the way we respond to others.
ESPECIALLY when our circumstances aren’t exactly ideal.
Colossians 4:5-6 encourages us, “Be wise in the way you act toward outsiders; make the most of every opportunity. Let your conversation be always full of grace, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how to answer everyone.”
We can make the most of every opportunity by:
- having self-control and not getting angry at the waiter for accidentally spilling hot sauce on you
- showing grace towards the cashier who’s struggling to submit your order because it’s her first day on the job
- being patient with the person on the other end of the line who is asking questions because they want to assist you in the best way possible
- extending peace towards those who voted differently than we did in the presidential election (yep, I went there)
- being kind towards the cashier when you’re in a hurry and the checkout line is moving slow
THAT is what it looks like to love others in a way that is unlike the rest of the world. THAT is the kind of love that restores the broken and heals the wounded.
We forget that it’s often the small, quiet moments that shout loudest towards the Kingdom.
The Christlike attitude we portray can, and should, make others do a 180. The way we respond to others when our circumstances aren’t exactly ideal should have Jesus written all over it.
I went to Tyler with a friend a while back and, on the way home, she wanted (needed) to stop by Dunkin’ Donuts. While at the drive-thru window, she asked to order some of their jelly-filled munchkins and since we don’t have a Dunkin’ Donuts in Longview, she had been looking forward to going ALL DAY LONG.
I kid you not.
Unfortunately, the odds were not in her favor that day as THEY WERE OUT OF THE JELLY-FILLED MUNCHKINS. But instead of getting angry or frustrated with the worker (which she could have EASILY done), she kindly responded, “Aw man! That’s okay! I’ll get something else!”
Clearly taken aback, the worker replied, “Wow! YOU ARE SO NICE! You’re the FIRST PERSON ALL DAY LONG to have not gotten mad or been rude to me!”
It was evident she was not expecting such a gracious response and was completely caught off guard by this Christlike attitude.
As we drove away, I was thinking about how shocked the worker was to have my friend respond the way she did. It was profoundly different and unlike any response she’d received that day. It was a normal, everyday encounter that was handled with love in an unusual way and it was worth paying attention to.
When that worker gets home and reflects on her day, do you know what interaction will stick out the most to her?
I’ll give you a hint.
Not the dozens of customers who were rude to her.
She’s going to remember the ONE person who responded differently from all the rest. And she’s going to wonder why.
Here’s the coolest part about the whole story: two people were impacted by that one conversation. The employee at Dunkin’ Donuts, and the onlooker in the passenger seat–me.
By choosing to display a Christlike attitude, two people went home restored that day.
Make sure a person’s interaction with you is the one that sticks out the most when they get home and reflect on their day.
Remember, to love each other deeply is to choose to love others when loving them in that moment isn’t the easiest thing to do.
The moments that seem insignificant to us are the very same moments that can significantly affect a person’s opinion of Jesus.
Even when your circumstances aren’t ideal, make sure your response is one that has Jesus written all over it.
Attitude, after all, is everything.
Join the movement! Purchase a “LOVE DEEPLY” (1 Peter 4:8) comfort color t-shirt here.