“Finally, all of you, live in harmony with one another;
be sympathetic, love as brothers, be compassionate and humble”
- 1 Peter 3:8
In the late 60’s there was a song entitled, “Everyday People,” which was sung by the group Sly and the Family Stone. [WOW ... I guess I’m really showing my age]. Anyway, the lyrics were pleas for peace and equality between differing races and social groups. One of the main verses started out saying, “I am no better and neither are you, we're all the same whatever we do.” Those words are just as true today as they were in the 60’s. The world is still seeking peace and unity, and we continue to want essentially the same thing – to coexist with one another, and live a long and fruitful life. The last line of the song is the key to the answer. It says, “I am everyday people.”
Living in harmony becomes difficult when we focus on our differences. We need to keep in mind that the similarities we share with any person far outweigh the differences. And the fact is that we all have more to gain by working together, rather than against each other. Truth is that we are all more alike than we would care to admit. The Bible confirms this truth in the words of Romans 12:16 – “Live in harmony with each other. Don’t be too proud to enjoy the company of ordinary people. And don’t think you know it all!”
Sometimes the only differences between people come from the opportunities they have been given, or the resources that are available to them. Other times the way we deal with our struggles set us apart from each other. As I read the following words, I realized that no matter what we may think of ourselves, we are all “everyday, ordinary people" ...
“Brothers and sisters, think of what you were when you were called. Not many of you were wise by human standards; not many were influential; not many were of noble birth. But God chose the foolish things of the world to shame the wise; God chose the weak things of the world to shame the strong. God chose the lowly things of this world and the despised things—and the things that are not—to nullify the things that are, so that no one may boast before him” (1 Corinthians 1:26-29).
Ask yourself - Who does God choose to do His work here on earth? It’s just ordinary, everyday people ... like you and me ... not perfect people or spiritual giants. Acts 4:13-14 gives us a great example... “When they saw the courage of Peter and John and realized that they were unschooled, ordinary men, they were astonished and they took note that these men had been with Jesus. But since they could see the man who had been healed standing there with them, there was nothing they could say.”
It’s so important to realize that if we are at peace with ourselves, it is easier to be at peace with others. So let’s take a quick personal assessment by answering the following three questions:
1. Am I making the most of my life?
2. When I look in the mirror do I like what I see?
3. Do I spend each day looking for ordinary, everyday people to meet?
It’s Friday, Let’s Sparkle ... action required ... We need to heed the powerful words of Matthew 5:47 ... “And if you greet only your own people, what are you doing more than others? Do not even pagans do that?”
Take time this weekend to recognize the fact that every human being has the ability to add something of value to our world. As we encounter other ordinary, everyday people, let’s appreciate the diversity that comes from our differences. Listen to others when they talk to you – give them your undivided, non-judgmental attention. And finally, offer positive, constructive, and caring words and actions, so that the same are returned to you ... remember, “Do to others as you would have them do to you” (Luke 6:31).
Let’s do our part to make this world a more peace-filled place. Have fun meeting common, ordinary, everyday people ... people just like you and me.
God’s Peace, Donna Weaver
Talent is God-given – Be thankful.
Praise is man-given – Be humble.
Conceit is self-given – Be careful.
- Dave Driscoll