Friday, October 23, 2009

Common Ground

This week I was given the opportunity to teach a class on the topic of Outreach at Baptist Bible Seminary in Northeast Pennsylvania. It was a good week and the classroom dynamic was very favorable. The weather was mild and the scenery was absolutely breath-taking. I met up with old friends, classmates, professors and coaches. It sure was great to see them all but it was not the highlight of my time away.

I was so blessed to meet 7 people from all over the world, with different backgrounds and varied ages. It has been a long time since I have interacted with so many people from such diverse backgrounds in an intimate context. I was reminded over and over again of one primary thing while interacting with these men.

We think that we are so different than other people. The color of their skin, the language they speak, where they come from and how they view the world shape our opinions. I was reminded this week just how similar we all our. I met men from Korea, Camaroon, Jamaica, Russia, Alabama, Pennslyvania, Ohio and Virginia.

These men, young and old alike, shared much more in common then they could ever differ on. I was amazed with the common goals, aspirations, passions, concerns, and dreams. These similarities extended from personal life to vocational life and from ministry to marraige. The problems that we face in the ministry and the challenges to move people in a new direction were similarly echoed by each man.

The point is, finding common ground with most people is not too difficult. When you find that common ground, it will lead to friendship, conversation, partnerships, networking, encouragement, and understanding. So the next time you meet someone new - look for the common ground.