Thursday, January 28, 2016

The Golden Rule

Once upon a time someone told me the Golden Rule did not actually appear in the Bible. I remember thinking how odd since it sounded like something Jesus would preach, but, like a lazy person, I totally believed this person (I can't remember who said it and under what context).

This morning's Upper Room daily devotional quotes Matthew 7:7-12, with an emphasis on Matthew 7:12.

Ask, Seek, Knock 
“Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives; the one who seeks finds; and to the one who knocks, the door will be opened.“Which of you, if your son asks for bread, will give him a stone? 10 Or if he asks for a fish, will give him a snake? 11 If you, then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give good gifts to those who ask him! 12 So in everything, do to others what you would have them do to you, for this sums up the Law and the Prophets.

This sure sounds like the Golden Rule of "do unto others as you would have them do unto you."

This is a practice I naturally try to adhere to with my friends and family. It is a much easier way to live than being sneaky or deceitful. I don't always stretch this to interactions with strangers, though. Sure, I smile at people when I pass them on the street, I say hello, I hold doors open, I help carry strollers down flights of stairs, you know the basic stuff that means I am a human and you are a human and we all live on the same planet. 

I don't take it to the next level and go out of my way to get to know more people. This summer I learned there are about 5 other other girls Ashley's age in our neighborhood. This fall I learned of another family who homeschooled. Why knew we had so much in common with those walking distance from our house? Why I haven't I taken the opportunity to get to know more of 70 or so families in our neighborhood? After 15 years I barely know the names of the ones I can see from our front door.

A new family moved in last fall. I noticed their driveway was not shoveled following the last storm. I did bring their mail and a box into our house and called them. Fortunately it turns out they were on vacation and were trapped somewhere else unable to fly home. They had given us their cell phone number because they have a small child and might be in need of a sitter. First off, I should have called them sooner (it took me four days) and secondly, I should swap phone numbers with more neighbors in case other situations arise.

That is one small step I can take towards "do to others what I would have them do to me." Through God's help, may I find more ways to reach out and treat people with kindness.

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