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The Golden Rule
Photo: Milena Stanishlevik
Has your blood ever begun to boil as you trailed behind a pokey freeway driver? In frustration, you zoom around them on the left wondering what they’re even doing on the road anyway. Then one day you have car trouble. You’re on the freeway limping along at 45 mph just trying to get to the nearest off ramp. Other motorists zoom past you making unpleasant hand gestures out their sunroofs as they pass.

Seeing things from the other person’s point of view doesn’t come naturally to us, does it?

In the 1930’s American Airways (which later became American Airlines) had a terrible problem with lost luggage.  Although they tried to correct the problem they were unsuccessful. So, the general manager called all his airport managers to fly to headquarters for a meeting. In transit, he made sure every manager’s suitcase was lost. Shortly after, the airline made a huge improvement in the area of missing luggage.

Funny Story

I once read a funny story that highlights the difficulty of seeing things from the other persons point of view: Three sons left home to make their fortunes, and they all did very well. They returned home and got together to discuss the presents they bought for their elderly mother. The first son bragged he had bought mother a mansion. The second son boasted his gift of a Mercedes and driver. The third son had them all beat. “You know how mother loves the Bible but can’t see well anymore?” He queried. “Well, I bought her a brown parrot that recites Bible verses. It took 20 monks in a monastery 12 years to teach the bird and I pledged $100,000.00 in donations for all those years. But it was worth it! Now, all mom has to do is name the chapter and verse, and the bird will recite it.”

Some time later, mother sent out her thank you notes. To her first son she wrote, “Milton, the house you built is so huge. I only live in one room but have to clean the whole thing!” To her second son she wrote, “Marty, since I’m too old to travel, I stay home all the time and never use the Mercedes. And, that driver is so rude!” Finally, to her third son she wrote, “Dearest Melvin, you were the only son to have the good sense to know what your mother really likes. The chicken was delicious!”

As I said, it’s difficult to walk in another person’s shoes. I’m sure that’s one reason Jesus told us to live by the golden rule – however you wish to be treated, treat others that same way yourself. If we can remember this and put it into practice, it will make a world of difference in our relationships with people.

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By Kathy A Lewis. Copyright © 2013 by GraceNotes. All rights reserved. Use of this material is subject to usage guidelines.

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