A few Sunday mornings ago I was rushing a young staff member through our crowded church Great Room between worship services, trying to get to John’s office to shoot a video resource with her and get home.
“Didn’t you once tell me the more successful you get the more slowly you need to walk through a crowd” she asked pointedly.
“Yeah, yeah, but this is an exception!” I tossed over my shoulder as I simultaneously “Excuse’d” my way around bodies, wishing for a parting of the Red Sea.
People (including my young friend with her annoying memory) can be so…inconvenient, right?
I had quoted a mentor of ours whose line had really impacted John and me even though I resist the word “successful” because I’m definitely not. But being in ministry I seem to know a lot of people, so I’m trying to learn this discipline of walking more slowly through crowds.
When I rush through a crowd
- I’m saying I’m a big deal because I’m busy.
- I’m saying tasks are more important than people.
- I’m saying my time is valuable and you’re not a priority.
Ouch, ouch OUCH!
sometimes o ften almost always come back to bite me.
This morning I was looking at the passage in Mark 5:21-43 that is about Jesus and crowds and individuals. I may or may not have heard the Holy Spirit say, “Ahem…”
Can you put yourself in this setting with Jesus?
21 When Jesus had again crossed over by boat to the other side of the lake, a large crowd gathered around him while he was by the lake. 22 Then one of the synagogue leaders,named Jairus, came, and when he saw Jesus, he fell at his feet. 23 He pleaded earnestly with him, “My little daughter is dying. Please come and put your hands on her so that she will be healed and live.” 24 So Jesus went with him.
We all live crowded lives. But Jesus did too.
Jairus was a distraction to Jesus, but Jesus moved slowly enough through the crowd to notice and respond to him as an individual.
You’re single or married, a coach, an employer, a mom, a leader, a pay-check earner, and you have a crowded life. You want to be like Jesus – want to respond to the “holy interruptions” that come your way, but it requires discernment.
Maybe the best we can do today is to start moving more slowly through the crowds, look people in the eye, and pray,
“Lord help me to be present to You and others. Show me what love requires of me today.”