Some interruptions are more welcomed than others.
One week, my housemate and I received a call from a friend who lives on the opposite coast. She was visiting her adult son on our side of the country and wanted to visit with us. We had two hours’ notice to switch gears from our previous plans, decide what to prepare for lunch, cook, and tidy up things before she arrived. We were delighted. Her visit was a welcomed interruption.
But some interruptions are undesirable—such as when a friend bared her soul about a painful issue. She had just begun to unburden herself when the other person looked at her watch and announced, “Sorry, this is my errand time. I’ll check in with you tomorrow.”
When I first began my career, I was ungracious when interrupted. A manager, who later became a trusted friend, told me I only focused on my task, not the company’s overall goals. The company didn’t just need my piece of the puzzle. Other employees required answers to questions and assistance with tasks. He helped me see the bigger picture. Paul says the same thing: Let each of you look not only to his own interests, but also to the interests of others.
Had my roommate and I not been flexible, we would have missed a lovely reunion with a friend we hadn’t seen for several years. And the woman who put her errands first never regained the trust of the one whose confession she walked away from.
We will accomplish little if we are not mindful of our projects and responsibilities. However, if we are unwilling to be interrupted, we will miss opportunities to see the bigger picture and be present for others.
How can you look for the big picture so you won’t miss the interests of your family, coworkers, and others that God puts in your path?
(Photo courtesy of pixabay.)
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