One of the most difficult times to be courteous is when others interrupt us. How many of us have sighed inwardly when a co-worker "pops in just for a minute" when we are trying to prepare for a meeting? Even if we need to tell someone we are busy at the moment, we can do so courteously.
One day Jesus was walking with a huge crowd surrounding him when a woman touched his cloak. He might well have been tired, hungry, and eager to reach his destination. To stop just then would only delay him, by human standards. Yet he stopped and asked, "Who touched me?" (Luke 8:45).
He then identified the woman in need of healing and commended her. "Daughter, your faith has healed you. Go in peace" (verse 48).
On the same occasion, a man named Jairus fell at Jesus's feet, asking him to come to his house because his daughter was dying. Jesus changed his plans and stopped by Jairus's house, where he raised the girl from the dead.
By focusing more on God's "to-do" list than his own, Jesus showed that he viewed people not as interruptions but as friends.
Lord, I want to be so aware of your purposes for my life that I treat even interruptions as opportunities to love others.
Dr. Gary Chapman is the beloved best-selling author of The Five Love Languages and Love as a Way of Life. For more information, click here.