Nothing much

How many times have you asked someone how they are doing and the answer you get is either, "Fine" or "Good?" Or when you ask someone what they are doing they will say, "Nothing?" Now, how many times have you given those same answers when someone asks you those questions? We all do that. We assume that the people who are asking really don't want to know our feelings and oftentimes we don't wish to share our feelings with just anyone.

I've got a challenge for you. The next time you ask someone how they are doing and they answer with "fine" or "good," follow that up with this quesion: "No, really, how are you doing?" They may look at you like you're stupid and walk away or they may actually share their heart with you. People are dying for someone to talk to and share their lives with. In our busy world we've become way too comfortable with short, pre-packaged answers for every question. The next person you run into may be dealing with issues so big that they feel like they are drowning in them. But if you sincerely make yourself available (or vulnerable) to their need then you might find yourself throwing them a life preserver and ministering to them in ways you never expected.

Jesus never settled for short, pre-packaged answers from people. His constant questions to those He met were, "How are you really doing?" and "What can I do for you?" Let me warn you, if you approach people in this way you actually may have to make an investment in their lives. This takes time and energy and goes against the grain of our culture. But it also demonstrates Jesus in ways that most people will grasp. And it may give you the opportunity to point them to the only One who can offer the hope that they are seeking.

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