Over the last few weeks, I have been sharing about what it means to be a Civil Grace Giver. If you have missed either of the two blog posts I would encourage you to go back and read them to have a full understanding of the concept.
As a Christian, I believe now more than ever we are called to bring people together based on the things we have in common rather than focus on all the things that we disagree on.
This video is a big part of the problem, stating that we can not be “civil” to people that we do not agree with. I disagree with this statement. I would like to suggest that our goal should be to be civil with everyone, especially the ones we don’t agree with.
Recently I connected with a woman on Facebook that has a very different political point of view than I do. We messaged back and forth and determined that we both wanted to be respectful and kind towards each other and put the boundaries in place of what would be okay to share or not.
I have enjoyed chatting with her. Many times I think we avoid connecting with people that are not like us because it is hard to listen with the intent to understand rather than defend. When we only have people in our life that we agree with all the time how can we be the light that God calls us to be?
By having a connection with this woman, who is very different from me, I now have a chance to show her the love of God in a way that maybe she would not have had before.
Finding ways to connect with kindness and love rather than judgment and hatred would really make the world a better place.
One way to start an awkward conversation is to ask a question out of curiosity, in order to learn, instead of making a statement that could escalate the situation or make the other person defensive. (In coaching circles, this is called using a “coach approach” with a “curious question”.)
Many times I have used something of the form, “Just curious, what’s your thoughts behind ____” (whatever the statement that they just made). In most cases, people start to think about what they said instead of blindly repeating something they heard.
Your homework this week will be to pay attention when talking to someone to determine if you are listening to understand or to judge. Judgment is divisive. Seeking understanding will allow for many good things to happen including, compassion, forgiveness, love, friendship, and true connection. One way to measure this is to count how many times you use a curious question instead of a statement.
Do your part to listen for understanding and watch how God guides you to one more question to ask to allow for His love to be revealed in a very sweet way. Pointing people to “the One” is my goal and I pray it is yours as well.
As always, if I can help you with anything, I would love to connect.
Schedule a “get to know each other” Zoom meeting!
Playlists — music can change your mood, enjoy some of the songs that encourage me.
The Identity Key — you can purchase my book on Amazon.