- Relational Wisdom | Ken Sande | Biblical Emotional Intelligence | Peacemaking | Institute Christian Conciliation | Reconciliation - https://rw360.org -

13 Dogs and 1 Cat

I recently found thirteen dogs and one cat who show us how to enjoy a peaceful holiday meal. In the process they demonstrate a central dynamic of relational wisdom (click here [1] if video screen does not appear below).

There is a beautiful story behind this creative clip [2], as well as an inspiring life lesson. All of the “actors” were recruited from animal rescue shelters. Freshpet [3], the company that sponsored the project, wanted to demonstrate that dogs and cats that have been abused and cast off by others could behave well when treated with gentleness and love.

The same is true of people around us. Many of them have been mistreated and rejected, causing them to become suspicious, defensive and withdrawn.

But God loves to rescue people who are trapped in darkness and fear (Col. 1:13-14; Luke 4:18), and he will often use us as channels of his redeeming grace (1 Thess. 5:14). He brings lonely people across our paths so that we can reach out to them with his kindness and love (1 John 4:19).

They may be cautious at first, afraid to risk being hurt and rejected all over again. (I’ve felt that way myself at times.) But if we persist in treating others with gentleness and patience—just as Jesus has treated us—we will often be amazed at the way he rekindles trust and draws them into safe and meaningful relationships, with both himself and other people.

So look around you in the days ahead. Be more other-aware [4] at church, at work, and in the grocery store. Look for people who seem lonely, cautious, or withdrawn, and reach out to them with a warm smile [5] and words of encouragement [6]. Do it day after day, constantly praying that God will channel his love and kindness through you to a broken heart.

And be ready to see him rescue others from the corners and shadows of society and bring them into his great banquet feast (Luke 14:21-23).

– Ken Sande

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© 2014 Ken Sande

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