It was a hard lesson you gave us the other day.
We saw you in the lobby and said how much we've missed you, at church and at Bible study. Your reply was to-the-point. "Nobody called."
"But we always asked your friend how you are. "
That's the problem. We asked ABOUT you, but never asked YOU.
And for that gaffe, I apologize. I'm guilty of taking the easy way out and asking the person in front of me about you, instead of actually asking you.
It takes work to keep in touch with people.
The art of letter writing is clearly dying out. It's been replaced with email and texting. But not everyone can get texts on their phone. And email requires an effort on your part to look at it.
Even the use of phone calls seems to be dying out. I screen my phone calls, I presume others do too. I'm more likely to reach an answering machine than a real person.
Lord, give us the patience to make the time for those who are missing from our midst.
I've heard more than one person say "The pastor never called me when I was sick." And the pastor's response is "No one ever told me you were sick."
People go to the doctor when they are sick, but fail to let the pastor or church office know when something is wrong. And so information goes missing, and feelings are hurt.
Lord, give us the courage to ask for help when we are in need.
Relationships are a two-way street. We need to learn to ask others if they are OK. We need to learn to let others know when we need help.
"For everyone who asks, receives. Whoever seeks, finds. And to everyone who knocks, the door is opened." (Matthew 7:8)
We will continue to ask about you. We may even remember once in a while to ask you directly. We hope that you will rejoin us. We will understand if you don't. We hope you will reach out and share with us if you are hurting. We will be there with support.
- Ann Warner