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Golden Rule can be a powerful thing

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POSTED: October 18, 2010 9:12 p.m.
There used to be a thing called “telephone etiquette” in our society. It seems no longer to exist.
Most of us have had the privilege of sitting next to “loud cell phone guy” in the restaurant. I mean, I went there to eat and enjoy the company of my family.
But think about the changes in telephones in the last couple of decades. I remember when we had only one phone in the house, and it was corded. The cord was 3 to 4 feet long. To talk on the phone in my home meant that you were seated at the bar in the kitchen.
Now every home that has a landline has a cordless phone in every room. Every child over the age of 10 has his or her own phone. And we text and talk to people in other places all the while ignoring those in the room with us.
When my wife and I were preparing for marriage, we went through counseling. The preacher who counseled us was 72 years old. He was widowed. He was the interim pastor of the church where I was music and youth minister and Tina was the organist.
We went to “Brother Richard’s” home two or three times for this counseling. I will never forget sitting there when his phone rang. Tina and I immediately got quiet, fully expecting that he would answer the phone. He ignored it and continued to talk to us. It rang again. He kept talking. It was obvious that Tina and I were a bit nervous about him missing a call. We looked at each other, at the phone and then at him.
He let it ring again without moving to answer it. Then he smiled and said, “I’ve discovered that when that thing rings, if you sit real quiet, it will stop in a minute. And then it will ring again in a few hours.”
Do you know what he was saying to us that day? He was saying, “You are here, and you are important to me. Whoever was calling will call back. But right now, my time is yours.”
Do you know how special that made us feel? It made us feel important and loved.
What do you do when your phone rings? Do you drop everything to answer it right then? Or do you show those who are with you that they matter? I know there are times when a phone call is really important, but there are also times when we need to show love and courtesy to those who are with us.
May I encourage you to treat others with love and respect, not just with the phone, but all the time.
Jesus said, “Do unto others as you would have others do unto you.” That’s the Golden Rule. We could make a powerful impact on our world if we would follow those words of wisdom.
Will you do that? Act like Jesus. Treat others as you wish to be treated.

 

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