Tuesday, November 24, 2009

The Noisy Gong

If I speak in the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I am only a resounding gong or a clanging cymbal.
(1Co 13:1)

If we aren't communicating with love as we interact with people today, at work, with family or friends, we're just making noise. Ever been around a drum set, and smack the cymbals as hard as you can? I get to be around one more and more often these days. When the song is humming along, it's great to hear the beat and cadence, but when you're not ready for it, when it's not something you're prepared for, - CRASH! - It's a different story.
The hairs on your neck stand up and your ears ring, and you immediately want that to end. You don't care what it takes, you just want it to stop. Is that the kind of friend you ever want to be? Me neither. And how many of us are willing to admit that this could be us? It's like someone telling you that you need to go take a shower, because you stink. What? Me? No way. That's me? How could that possibly be?
Still, I often find myself in this boat because I'm a direct, to-the-point kind of guy. The day is humming right along, and I'm marching. Someone comes to me, and instead of showing love, I'm moving right along in my busy-ness, and -CRASH- It doesn't come easy to shift gears, to pause and come to rest, but that doesn't make it any less necessary.

If we are witnessing or playing the music in ministry, or if we're just giving someone our ear, we have to show them that we care. Sometimes, love has action, hands and feet, and it's translated through the literal motions of doing something for someone else. But also, sometimes, to be genuine, we just need to listen. We don't need to offer the latest self-help advice or show our book-smarts. We just need to hear the soul in front of us. That may be just enough for the heart of the matter.
A good friend once reminded me of this in a very simple, yet resoundingly powerful statement:
“Nobody cares what you know until they know that you care.”

1 comment:

  1. Great BLOG Dan. I love to read your BLOG and hear how Christ has shaped you!

    In Christ,

    Uncle Jon