We can’t make it through life without dealing with people. They are everywhere. They are in our homes and at our work. They are at church and where we enjoy our leisure.
A lot of us are like the cartoon character, who said, “I love mankind. It’s people I can’t stand.”
Like it or not, we need people. We might wish we could live life totally on our own terms, but that is impossible.
Learning to deal with people will help us at work or at church. It will help us live a happier life. Let’s look at some excerpts of Jesus’ Sermon on the Mount, to see what principles he can give us for getting along with people.
- Be careful about judging others (Matthew 7:1-5).
- This does not say we cannot or should not discern good from evil.
- It does say we should not subject others to unreasonable criticism.
- We are not wise enough to make such criticisms.
- We are not good enough to make such criticisms.
- It will keep us busy enough, just monitoring ourselves.
- If we try to straighten other people out while we have the same problem, then we become as comical as the man with a plank in his eye trying to pick out specks in others’ eyes.
- Do more than expected (Matthew 5:38-42).
- Turn the other cheek. This does not mean that we cannot defend our lives. It does mean that we should not take little insults too seriously.
- Go the extra mile
- Give another your coat
- This will drive others crazy until they find out why you are so kind.
- Don’t let disputes fester (Matthew 5:23-26).
- It has been said that time heals all wounds, but this is not always true.
- Sometimes time allows a situation to become worse and worse until it becomes dangerous.
- Show kindness to everyone (Matthew 5:43-48).
- It is a shame to say sometimes we can’t even show kindness to those who are kind to us.
- Jesus wants us to be kind, even to the undeserving.
- Showing kindness to an enemy is the ultimate revenge.
- Treat others as you want to be treated (Matthew 7:12).
- This is what has been called the golden rule, for the principle is worth gold to us.
- Jesus saw this statement as summary of the law and the prophets.
- Notice that Jesus states this as a positive. He didn’t say, “Don’t do to others anything you would not want done to you.”
Conclusion – People who have people power can be used of God in a mighty way. After all, people are His first concern, and people are His greatest tools.