We have a lot of uninvited guests go through our yard. First, a word of explanation: the neighbours on either side of us have fenced yards, we don’t and that gives roaming deer and bears free access from the back alley to the street in front of our house. Ironically, earlier this week one of those neighbours had their bountiful pumpkin crop smashed and their compost bin overturned while folks on the other side had their fence knocked over in the critters’ pursuit of their bountiful crop of grapes. Our compost bin, though, is securely attached to the deck and the garden is long ago harvested and cleaned up. I’m not bragging, I’m just grateful that we don’t have to figure out to deal with these visitors.
This week I read a book in which Max Lucado presented a terrific Biblical pattern of how we should treat friends, as well as strangers and it both challenged and blessed me. You see, for more years than I can remember, I have made it my daily practice to attempt to encourage at least one person – whether I know them or not. Today (our Canadian Thanksgiving) I greeted store clerks as well as folks walking down our street with a “Happy Thanksgiving” word and smile and everyone of them suddenly put a smile on their face and returned the good wishes.
God has a lot of things to say about how we are to treat one another, be they friends, strangers, nice folks or plain old grumps. How they respond isn’t my responsibility; to show God’s love, is. Here are just a few instructions from Scripture: we are to love one another, accept one another (though not necessarily approve of or adopt their behaviour) and forgive one another.
So, please accept my genuine good wishes for this week!