“And whatever you do, in word or deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.”
– Colossians 3:17

Most of us have people in your lives whom we choose to allow to bother us … to live rent free in our heads. One of the challenges we all face as earthlings is to say things with love.

Madeleine L’Engle said so beautifully, “We draw people to Christ not by loudly discrediting what they believe, by telling them how wrong they are and how right we are, but by showing them a light that is so lovely that they want with all their hearts to know the source of it.” Yes, the Holy Spirit does for us what we cannot do for ourselves.

How we choose to treat the visitor, the stranger, the new person at school, the receptionist at the doctor’s office and even the person who is driving down the road too slowly says more about us than them. And how about how we treat those we see every day, classmate, spouse, coworkers, friends, and roommate?  Do we treat others as if they were gifts from God? Or are they useful contacts or a means to an end?   

The divine spark is harder to see in some than others. Maybe those people are in our lives to help us learn something about ourselves. It’s especially important to pray for people who bug us. It’s amazing what happens to us when we pray for others.

Imagine if we treated others and ourselves not just with respect, warmth, kindness, humility, patience, love, joy, peace, self-control, but also as gifts from God.   

I think they call that hospitality.   Someone shared years ago that “hospitality, also known as love for others, is grounded in Christ. Some examples: a smile, a sincere greeting, or the holding of a door for a distant stranger. When we welcome the guest, greet the stranger, or feed the hungry, we are doing these things for both God and neighbor. This does not apply to just the stranger, but also: coworker, spouse, siblings, roommate, friend, or classmate.”

Let us pray that we may be hospitable, welcoming, respectful, and loving in whatever we do. Say it with love.