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Care to connect

25 January 2023 ‘May the Lord make your love increase and overflow.’ 1 Thessalonians 3:12 NIV

When your phone drops its signal in the middle of a call, you know it straight away. When you’re scrolling through social media or playing an online game, and the internet goes down, what’s your immediate reaction? Annoyance? Frustration? Anger? We can have similar feelings when we’re trying to connect with people. We tend to realise pretty quickly if we’re not getting through to them or they’re not interested in what we have to say. And that can lead to the same feelings of frustration and anger, especially if we’re putting a lot of effort into reaching them.  In Everyone Communicates, Few Connect, Dr John Maxwell writes: ‘When I interact with people…I know I’ve connected when I sense extra effort – people go the extra mile; unsolicited appreciation – they say positive things; unguarded openness – they demonstrate trust; increased communication – they express themselves more readily; enjoyable experiences – they feel good about what they’re doing; emotional bondedness – they display a connection on an emotional level; positive energy – their emotional “batteries” are charged by being together;…unconditional love – they are accepting without reservation. Anytime…I see evidence of these signals, I know I’m connecting…How are you doing when it comes to connecting? When you interact one-on-one with someone important in your life, do you receive these signals?…Even if connecting with others isn’t something you’re good at today, you can learn how to do it and become better tomorrow.’ But first, we must genuinely care about the people we’re trying to connect with. That’s why Paul wrote, ‘May the Lord make your love increase and overflow.’

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