The Benefits of Being Nice

Anyone who has ever spent time as a patient in a hospital knows the medical profession is anti-sleep.  Maybe it’s because the staff that covers the night shift are resentful of anyone who gets to rest.  Last week I was consistently awakened at midnight to take my vitals.  Really?!  And then at 5 A.M., I was awakened to draw blood.  Now I try to be a nice guy.  I try to be polite and thoughtful of other’s feelings but when the phlebotomist came in at 5 and turned on all the overhead lights suddenly blinding me and producing visions of the apocalypse, well, let’s just say; I wasn’t overly Christ-like.  And then it occurred to me.  I had an epiphany. We all know you should always be nice to anyone who is handling your food.  I realized how stupid I was not being nice to a woman who was about to pierce me with a ten foot long needle!  And yes, just in case you wondered, she did make me pay for my rudeness.

Often times I excuse my bouts of rudeness by remembering Matthew 23 where Jesus isn’t “gentle Jesus meek and mild.”  Then I have to remember His wrath was produced by those with power abusing those without power.  My displays are because I feel disrespected.  There is a huge difference.  Jesus never lashed out when it was personal.

His message to us in the Sermon on the Mount is consistent regarding our going the second mile and turning the other cheek.  If we really want to witness we do so by our behaviors and responses and not by handing out pamphlets.  He did say, “Hereby will men know you are my disciples, if you have love for one another.” John 13:35

Written by Roger Bothwell on April 24, 2017