Saturday, January 20, 2007

Interconnected

In the wee hours of yesterday morning I discovered two night prowlers… and since I also stand guilty by association ….I guess that makes three of us !
We were each in our own homes but we were ‘connected’. We were all up at 3:00 am. and all of us were at our computers. One girl, I have never met but we have connected through our blogs; the other one was an old childhood friend that I have stayed in contact with through e-mail.
None of us saw each other, none of us spoke to each other… and yet I was able to discover what they were doing. One posted a comment on my blog, the other sent me an e-mail both displaying times sent.
Have you ever considered how much of new technology is focused on making it easier to be interconnected, not only with family and friends but with people we would otherwise never know? The whole world is truly becoming one ‘neighbourhood’.
Just to put things in perspective ,I was six years old when I was shown a strange black thing on the wall in my grandparents’ house that would allow me to talk to someone I could not see. What a long way we have come since then !!!

My husband heard a report on TV yesterday that someone compiling information on 911 found that when he mapped out where the bodies were, most of them were found in groups. The finding surprised him !
Man was created to be social…. babies that are not spoken to or held, simply die.
Interconnectedness – that was God’s idea…. “It is not good for man to be alone!”
We were created for fellowship… with God and with each other. There is purpose and pleasure in being connected.
Think of your most treasured memories… do they not involve other people?

We all value the people who are constant in our life… family and friends… but have you ever considered that everyone who touches your life changes you in some way? As you also change those you touch throughout each day ? Even the people who you may only meet once. Our life journey is one of movement – changing and building – one moment at a time. I will never pass by this moment again, but I take something of this moment with me into the next.

Just as a butterfly flapping his wings in Africa begins the weather pattern that causes the storms we experience here, so also a seemingly insignificant interaction with someone you met can change far more than you would ever imagine. I once read of a study that followed the ripple effect started by one person smiling at a stranger.

Life is busy and time is of the essence… our 'to-do' list at the end of a day is still longer than our ‘done’ list…. and so we focus on the big picture and miss the small things that are often the most important.

Let me illustrate with a personal experience.

I had just spent a hectic day at work and was anxious to get home where I still had a list of things to do before I could relax. But even before I could go home I had to stop at our bank. I waited impatiently in line and finally made it to the teller. The bank teller did not even look at me and was curt and impolite. My immediate thought reaction was….”I’ve had a hard day and I am in a hurry… you could at least be courteous doing your job.. I shouldn’t have to come in here and put up with a rude employee!”
Then I caught myself and prayed, “Lord, help me not to react…. but give me Your wisdom to respond with Your love.”
A thought crossed my mind and I spoke it out without thinking….. I said to the girl, “Do you have a headache?” For the first time she looked at me and said, “Oh, I have had such a headache all day !” I sympathized with her and we talked for a couple of minutes as she finished my transactions…. I watched the tension in her face ease and we even shared a laugh. As I was leaving the bank, I turned back to see her greet the next customer in line with a smile.

We so easily forget what power we have – especially as Christians – to speak into someone’s life. It may seem insignificant, it may be only a smile, or a kind word , a hug, or a quick helping hand, or an e-mail, but we can make a difference in someone’s day. And in the paradox that is our reality today in a world increasingly rushed and stressed, we are also becoming increasingly interconnected. We have so many opportunities to pause a moment here and there in our busy days to reach out to each other and to a lost and hurting world --- every man our neighbor.

Galatioans 5:14
“For all the law is fulfilled in one word, even in this; You shall love your neighbor as yourself.”




4 comments:

Anonymous said...

You just keep coming up with great interesting topics that helps start ones day with positive thought. They really are good devotionals. Especially for first thing in the day!! Keep it up and publish them when you get a couple of months. jaj

Carolanne said...

This is beautifully written and I love your welcoming message on your profile.
It is important to take the time to encourage others and remember that God did put us in each other's lives for a reason. Even the internet - connecting with people who we would otherwise not meet has become a invaluable part of my life.
Thanks for sharing!

Demara said...

Hi Julie...it WAS extremely nice to see you were up in the wee hours of the morning with me...and again...I was touched by your writings. My favourite part of this story was when you turned around to see the teller greet the next person in line with a smile...You don't seem to miss a thing do you? Not even me sneaking around at night...haha :) Thanks for being my neighbor even if it is only online!!!

Susie said...

Hi Julie,
Just stopping in from CarolAnne's to say hello.
What a beautiful post! I'm so glad to meet you, and I'll be visiting again.
Please stop in and say "hi" anytime!