Perry Emerick – Mesa Campus Pastor
So the other day, I was sitting in a parking lot getting ready to go in and pick up a pizza when the guy parked next to me opened his car door and hit my car with his door as he was getting in to his car. I looked over at him, and he never even bothered to look at me at all. As he backed out of his parking spot, I decided to get out of my car and really just kind of stared at him with the, “hello…you just hit my car with your door” look. Realizing he was caught, he rolled down his window and blew off the whole thing saying he just hit my mirror and everything was fine. There was no apology or concern whatsoever.
In another situation, I was pulling into a grocery store parking lot and noticed a lady coming out of the grocery store with her cart full of bagged groceries in a bit of a hurry. She gets to her vehicle, quickly unloads all the groceries, then pushes her empty shopping cart against the rear bumper of the car parked next to her, gets in her truck and races out of the parking lot. She was parked about 3 spaces from a place where you can leave your shopping cart. Instead, she just left it for someone else to deal with.
I hesitate posting these experiences because I don’t want to give the perception of some kind of angry rant. However, both of these experiences have been bothering me because they speak of a lack of courtesy for others that I perceive to be growing in our culture. I am certainly not above reproach in this area of my life, but it is far more easy to see it in other than it is in yourself. Yet seeing it in others has made me contemplate my own actions and how I justify the things I do. Here is the catch all phrase I think we revert back to when we don’t want to deal with something…
It’s no big deal…
Here is the question I have…when does something become a “big deal”? Our culture is quick to point out that something is no big deal, but I think that is an excuse we use for selfish reasons to not consider others. Yet what does our lack of consideration communicate about how we value others? What does it communicate about us?As believers, what does it communicate about Christ?
Jesus spoke very inconveniently in Matthew 5 about how we should respond when someone strikes us, wants to borrow from us, or asks us to go out of our way. In all of those situations, the challenge from Jesus is basically to go the extra mile for the sake of others. Jesus challenged us with this not as a law, but as an example of love, an example he ultimately modeled by going to the cross. You see, the defining quality of believers according to Jesus will be our demonstration of love for others.
But heres the thing, it is not usually how we conduct ourselves in “big deals” that communicate love…it is in the “little deals”. It is integrity, patience, kindness, sacrifice and respect in the little things that have a major impact on how others see us, and ultimately how others may see Christ. This should compel us to think differently about our actions and our words, even when it seems like no one will care. It matters. And when it comes to how we represent the kingdom of God…I think it is a big deal. What do you think?