Attentiveness vs. Unconcern
Showing the worth of a person by giving undivided attention to his words & emotions.
Hebrews 2:1 -So we must listen very carefully to the truth we have heard, or we may drift away from it.
This is a very good one to pull us up on a DAILY basis. Unconcern seems like such a harsh word doesn’t it. One might say that just because I’m giving no attention to that person, it doesn’t mean I have no concern for them. (I know I would have said that to myself before.).. When in fact it is that cut & dry. If we are not being attentive to someone, then we are not acknowledging their worth as a person.
When asked to give an example, Miss 14 explained a scenario where she shows attentiveness towards someone she values, showing them how much that person is worth TO HER. I corrected her on that way of thinking, pointing out that everyone has WORTH… and it doesn’t come from us.. whether we think they deserve it or not… it comes from God.
Put another way, every person deserves our attentiveness, and is of GREAT WORTH, no matter whether they are of great or little value to us personally.
You could use an example like this – You are entering the supermarket and you notice that someone leaving has had their bag tear, and there are apples rolling all over the floor. Most people would hurry to the person’s aid. Usually this is done for two reasons… to help out the person who’s apples are now all over the floor, but also for general public safety for those around. Someone could trip etc. In a situation like this, the helper is recognising the worth of both the person who lost the apples, and those around the incident also. You would most likely not know a single one personally, so there so no personal worth of these people to you. By recognising the person’s emotions… possibly embarrassment, unhappiness, annoyance… the helper is showing the person that they are of worth… that their feelings MATTER.
To tie something else very important into this type of scenario… showing attentiveness to others is a WITNESS of Jesus within us. In the above situation, someone else may have also seen the dropped apples, but chose to see no worth in the person, so passed by without helping. There could be a couple of reactions within this particular type of person. 1. They notice that someone helped out and think that maybe they should have helped too. (& might next time) or 2. Have no care at all. (A seed will still have been planted in that person though.)
On the topic of worth, these scriptures are great to mediate on….. it really speaks to the amazing worth that God saw in us (& place in us) from the very beginning.
For you formed my inward parts; you knitted me together in my mother’s womb. I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Wonderful are your works; my soul knows it very well. My frame was not hidden from you, when I was being made in secret, intricately woven in the depths of the earth. Psalm 139:13-15
Are not five sparrows sold for two pennies? And not one of them is forgotten before God. Why, even the hairs of your head are all numbered. Fear not; you are of more value than many sparrows. Luke 12:6-7
Recognising the worth of others also comes under the greatest commandment…
The second is this: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no other commandment greater than these.” Mark 12:31
I heard a great quote the other day while listening to a Ps Shane Willard message. He was more talking about churches today, but is also relevant to people in general.
He said the following : People care more about being RIGHT then being KIND.
This really resonated with me as I recognise it in so many situations. The Bible does not say that if so & so (church or individual) believe every single doctrine that you do, then and only then do you apply the greatest commandment. It says You shall love your neighbour as yourself. It does not say, if your neighbour stands on the same beliefs as you, that you should love him as yourself.
This all comes back to WORTH !! We are all so good at placing different worth values on people…. I, personally am not a celebrity loving type person… I have put some thought into this and am quite confident that if Julia Roberts or Robert Downey Jnr (I chose them as I do particularly like them) turned up at my door, I wouldn’t treat them any different to others… I don’t think I have that ‘awe-struck’ trait that so many do. I don’t place any greater value or worth on these ‘famous’ people than on any other. This isn’t the ‘norm’ though.
My point is that we can be very good at ‘judging’ a persons worth… whether they deserve a little, a lot, somewhere in between, or none at all. But this is not how GOD sees it, and it’s not how we should see it. We shouldn’t just mediate on those verses in order to recognise our OWN worth, but also to see the worth of others. If we can reach a point where we can be confident in the worth of ourselves and others, than we would not struggle with this particular character trait. We would not show unconcern for others if we were firm in our belief of other’s WORTH !!
I feel I have nowhere near even scratched the surface on what I could say on this topic, so here’s just a snippet for you. :0)
Blessings Peeps !! xox