Would you consider yourself a people person? This goes beyond a simple introvert/extrovert distinction. Our American dictionary would define a “people person” as someone who is outgoing, sociable, compassionate, likes to interact with others, and has good communication skills. Now, this obviously does not describe everyone on the planet. For many of my years, this did not describe me. I was the shy student who sat in the back of the room, never raised my hand to say anything in class, wouldn’t look up as I walked the halls or the sidewalk, and was deathly afraid to speak in public. I use this example for the sole purpose that being a “people person” is not a word that would ultimately describe who I am.
Now, maybe you would also say that you are not much of a people person either, but now think about the kinds of people that you tend to gravitate towards. These are the people you like being around and hanging out with, these could be some of your life-long friends or family members. Now, think of the kinds of people you have a hard time getting along with or relating to. What makes them so hard to connect with? What is it about them that creates a hesitancy within you that can sometimes lead to avoidance? I ask it because I know what that feels like. I’ve been there myself many times both past and present. The question we then wrestle with is: is there is a difference or distinction between being a people person and having a heart for people? I would say that there most definitely is.
This week, we are going to be talking about “Humanity,” as we continue in our Believe series. The focus will not so much be about how we view ourselves, but rather, how we view other people and how God views humanity in general. As a believer in Christ, He calls us to see other people like He does, to connect with them in ways that move them closer to knowing the love of their Savior. If we are each honest with ourselves, that can be a tough thing to do, especially when it comes to people who fall into that latter category of being hard to relate to or connect with. You might not have much in common with those people in your life, but God designed and intended us to be in community and fellowship with one another, learning from each other, growing together, and celebrating our various differences because that’s how He created us.
As a Christian, one may not be classified as a “people person,” but we are called to possess a heart for other people. A heart that longs for them to follow Christ, an energy to come alongside of them in their lives, a passion to share and show the love that Christ continually gives and shows to us. The heartbeat of Jesus is for people and He invites us to share in that with Him.
Pastor Ben Bigaouette