Attentiveness vs Unconcern
THE LITTLE BOY AND THE OLD MAN
Said the little boy, “Sometimes I drop my spoon.”
Said the little old man, ” I do that too.”
The little boy whispered, ” I wet my pants.”
“I do that too,” laughed the little old man.
Said the little boy, “I often cry.”
The little old man nodded, “So do I.”
“But worst of all,” said the boy, “it seems
Grown-ups don’t pay attention to me,”
And he felt the warmth of a wrinkled old hand.
“I know what you mean,” said the little old man.
We should strive to be ATTENTIVE vs Unconcerned!
1.characterized by or giving attention; observant.
2.thoughtful of others; considerate; polite; courteous.
Synonyms for Attentiveness: heedful, mindful, aware, alert, awake, watchful.
Antonyms for Attentiveness: indifferent, apathetic, unconcerned.
What the Bible says about being Attentive.
Philipians 2:4 not looking to your own interests but each of you to the interests of the others.
1 John 3:17 – 18 But if anyone has the world’s goods and sees his brother in need, yet closes his heart against him, how does God’s love abide in him?
Ephesians 4: 32 Be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ forgave you.
John 13:34-35 A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another: just as I have loved you, you also are to love one another. By this all people will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another.”
Romans 12: 9-13 Let love be genuine. Abhor what is evil; hold fast to what is good. Love one another with brotherly affection. Outdo one another in showing honor. Do not be slothful in zeal, be fervent in spirit, serve the Lord. Rejoice in hope, be patient in tribulation, be constant in prayer. Contribute to the needs of the saints and seek to show hospitality.
Hebrews 13: 1-2 Let brotherly love continue. Do not neglect to show hospitality to strangers, for thereby some have entertained angels unawares.
Colossians 3″ 12-14 Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience. Bear with each other and forgive one another if any of you has a grievance against someone. Forgive as the Lord forgave you. And over all these virtues put on love, which binds them all together in perfect unity
Matthew 25: 40 “The King will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.’
Examples from the Bible:
The Example of Jesus to Us:
1) When Jesus washed the disciples feet. Reference site
2) Jesus allowed and welcomed the children. Children:What Does it Mean to Welcome God’s Kingdom Like A Child?
Personal Thoughts and Application:
I am a caregiver. As a physical therapist, I must be attentive to the needs of my patients. I must listen to them, be an advocate for them, help them retrieve items they need, assist them in/out of bed, reposition them, assist them with walking, and yes….I do clean backsides. I don’t mind to do these things for my patients….I am blessed with that spiritual gift, and I never feel like that is something beneath me that I should call the nursing aides to do just because I have a professional degree. Yes, I am a caregiver….BUT, I AM NOT AN ENABLER. It is my job to teach people and encourage people to progress to greater independence and need me less. I think in the spiritual realm, this is God’s idea of being attentive and caring as well. He wants us to be attentive to the needs of others but not enable them, always bail them out, or avert the natural consequences of their choices.
Yes, I am a caregiver….who after caring for others needs all day long, struggles to go home and give of myself even more. This is where I need God’s help and strength….so that I can deny myself the “me” time I so desire and help my kids with their homework, tidy up the home, get supper, and spend quality time asking about each person’s day. We must learn to not attend so much to the things outside of our home, like our jobs, that we neglect to be attentive to the ones who are most entrusted to our care. In spite of the weariness, we must be kind, courteous, and giving.
Prayer for You: May you be attentive to the things, events, people, and circumstances that God puts into your world. May you find His strength to give of yourself to the needs of others. Through your attentiveness, may they know God’s special concern and love.
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