April 18

Written by Bill Grandi on April 18th, 2023

In this day and age of anger, hatred, malice, and vitriolic words, a person of peace, tranquility, and yes, sanity, is rare. Sadly rare. As I have given some thought to how I must react to these actions and words by others, I read a devotion. I must give credit to Cheryl E. Smith for the “germ” of my thoughts today. See the end of this post for information about this devotion.

Cheryl was writing about her husband, Kevin (whom I would love to meet), and how he was a humble man. The scenario is as Kevin is talking to their son about some of his experiences in the banking business. Here is what Cheryl wrote:

“Kevin respects people-all people. Regardless of their condition, age, race, discrepancies, behavior, or differences. I have never seen him mistreat anyone in all the years I have known him.

“The main thing I noticed about how he handled the customers he mentioned was his refusal to embarrass them. Even though they didn’t fit the everyday ‘normal’ mold, he never made them feel inferior. He never drew attention to their differences. He gave them all the time they needed. He treated them the way they and all people deserve to be treated. He handled them with the utmost respect, kindness, and patience-how he wants to be treated.

“He never embarrassed anyone. He never made anyone feel secondary. He loved each person with equal intensity. He was never partial. He never showed favoritism. He never recoiled, no matter how disfigured, marred, or ‘abnormal’ the person appeared.” (Excerpts from pages 126-127)

Hmmmm. That sounds like Someone else I know.  His name is Jesus. He didn’t play favorites, unless you consider giving hope, love, and acceptance to the down-and-out, the “less than,” the hurting, the physically imperfect, or the lost soul.

Imagine a world-small and big-if we all did like Jesus. Talk about change!!! But it starts with us in our own small world.

{Note: Cheryl has written 2 volumes called Homespun Devotions. I have resisted doing a review because I wanted to savor my time with them. Since I “won” Volume 2 in a blog give-away, I am reading it first. (Yeah…I know I’m not “right” sometimes).  I’m reading one or two of the short chapters at a time. I will give a complete review when I am finished with Volume 2. Hint: Buy it!}


10 Comments so far ↓

  1. Oh, to be like Jesus! To be like Cheryl’s husband…what a different world we would live in. May it start with me and those in my sphere of influence. Pray for me, please.

  2. This book is definitely remarkable, Bill, as are Kevin and Cheryl. There are examples all around us of those who take Jesus’ words to heart and live them out in this life. Let’s all strive to be one of them!

    • Bill Grandi says:

      I know you gave it a good review Martha. I was waiting for my copy to come when you wrote yours. Made me all the more eager. And yes, we need to be examples.

  3. Ryan S says:

    I think as you mention, common decency has gone out the window. Manners are not taught, simply being respectful and respectable seems to have gone by the way-side. I think largely the impersonal aspects of social media has creeped into society as normal.

    There is, however, something to be said about the directness of Jesus.

    Jesus was edgy, but only when he needed to be and only out of love. I think of Jesus speaking to the pharisee after being invited into his home for dinner and bypassing the wash basin. Yes, that was edgy, for the customs of the day, perhaps even disrespectful, but Jesus did it because the pharisee needed to here it and the religious crust that had formed around the man’s heart could only be penetrated by a pretty sharp blow. What Jesus did was attempted to reach a man that required unharnessed truth… not for an agenda, but out of deep, immeasurable love.

    I think the key is the motivation and the heart. In our world today, respect for the individual should never be set aside. Our “agenda” should never supersede the reality that regardless of who we interact with, we are to never forget that the people we speak with are human beings, are loved by God and deserve our proper respect.

    • Bill Grandi says:

      Great comment Ryan! I realize there are times we need to be edgy, as you call it, but that edginess should never be done out of a condescending manner or judgmental attitude. Your last paragraph is gold.

  4. gail says:

    Honestly, everything we do, think, respond to, say, every single action of our lives, either glorifies God or it doesn’t. Father, we want to always glorify You with every thought and action that we do, however, we know we still fall short of that. Help us Father, to have a mindset everyday, with everything we do, to pause and think, is this glorifying my Father, or causing Him to turn away. Help us Father, to repent when we do fall short without delays.

  5. Cheryl says:

    Pastor Bill! I was so blessed and surprised when I finally had the chance to come here and catch up today! I am running so far behind on my blog reading and am just now seeing this. Thank you from the bottom of my heart for your kind, encouraging words. They truly meant the world to me and blessed me so much! I will share them with my dear husband, and I know he would love to meet you, too. I think you are both a lot alike. May God richly bless you!!

    • Bill Grandi says:

      You are more than welcome Cheryl. I’m honored you have given me a chance to read the books. I’m looking forward to finishing this one (I am taking it almost a devotion a day with a few extra thrown in here and there. I am thoroughly enjoying the personal touch and the vulnerability I see.