Christians should be the best at getting along with others. First of all, because they have the Holy Spirit to help them, and, second, because the world is watching to see if having a relationship with Jesus really does make a difference.
We’ve already learned that in order to change our behavior toward difficult people, we can’t change our behavior (check out my post on that topic here). Instead, we need to change our thoughts first. One thought to change is about ourselves, and another thought to change is the fact that Jesus promised rewards for those who loved difficult people—
If you love those who love you, what credit is that to you? Even sinners love those who love them. And if you do good to those who are good to you, what credit is that to you? Even sinners do that. And if you lend to those from whom you expect repayment, what credit is that to you? Even sinners lend to sinners, expecting to be repaid in full. But love your enemies, do good to them, and lend to them without expecting to get anything back. Then your reward will be great, and you will be children of the Most High, because he is kind to the ungrateful and wicked. (Luke 6:32-35)
One way to love others is by learning to “speak their language.” Most of us communicate with four different accents: Doer, People, Planner, Vision.
You can watch the video where I explain these styles in more detail, but you can learn their accent by listening for…
(1) How they handle stressful situations:
- Doer—get hyper-focused
- Planner—withdraw to plan
- People—call a meeting
- Vision—take time to daydream
(2) How they listen to others:
- Doer—take short bullet points and then quick action
- Planner—take detailed notes, and ask lots of detailed questions
- People—make good eye contact, take very little notes, and then reiterate what was said
- Vision—doodle, and express “ping pong ball” thoughts
(3) How they speak about folks with other “accents”:
- Doer—this is taking too long; nothing ever gets done; they’re daydreamers
- Planner—they jump the gun; they’re swayed by emotions; they’re unpredictable
- People—why don’t they want to meet; they’re too aggressive; they’re too robotic
- Vision—they don’t see the big picture; they’re too rigid; they’re too emotional
You CAN get along better with everyone. Romans 12:18 tells us that peaceful living with others depends on you and me. Let’s do this well so that Jesus is glorified!