As we shared experiences about how different people got into the church, there was one that, to date I have not forgotten. 

An elderly woman shared that the reason why she came into the church for the first time was that I would always acknowledge and greet her as I walked into the church. She visits a bar beside the church frequently. 

She then added about how transformed her life is today. She stopped drinking and is no longer involved in fisticuffs. She has grown. But what did God leverage to bring her into the fold? Simple courtesy. 

There is a generation that is rising that does not seem to understand the power of courtesy. They speak as they want, thinking it is being expressive. They dress as they want, thinking it is being free. No! Courtesy must not be lost. It has to be learned. 

What is courtesy? It is the showing of politeness in one’s attitude and behaviour towards others. It is quite scriptural to show courtesy. 

Finally, all of you be of one mind, having compassion for one another; love as brothers, be tenderhearted, be courteous;

I Peter 3:8 NKJV

Courtesy will show in your tone and manner of speech. Are your words graceful or disgraceful? Some people speak anyhow. It is worse off in the times we are in now. 

Be gracious in your speech. The goal is to bring out the best in others in a conversation, not put them down, not cut them out.

Colossians 4:5-6 MSG

Courtesy shows in how you treat total strangers. Do you treat them honourably, or do you only wake up after discovering people’s status? 

In that region, there was an estate of the leading citizen of the island, whose name was Publius, who received us and entertained us courteously for three days.

Acts 28:7 NKJV

Do you treat your friends in a shabby way? There was a time we hosted a friend of one of our team leaders in church. Our first rule was to keep reminding the team leader, “He may be your friend, but he is our guest. Please treat him well”. It is very important. 

Do you realize that you love to always relate with and return to people and places where you are treated honourably and with courtesy?

How do you also treat the opposite sex, the disadvantaged, or the needy? Boaz showed us the image of a man with courtesy. 

He came into the field and greeted without expecting to be greeted first. That is courtesy. 

Now behold, Boaz came from Bethlehem, and said to the reapers, “The Lord be with you!” And they answered him, “The Lord bless you!”

Ruth 2:4 NKJV

He was quick to notice a new addition to the workers on the field. He did not treat Ruth with disrespect. He gathered information discreetly about her and then made an informed decision to show her care. That is courtesy. 

He ensured she had enough and invited her to join them as they ate. He knew she would be feeling shy. That is courtesy. 

Even though she came into the field to make a very important request, Boaz still followed the process before marrying Ruth. That is courtesy. 

Courtesy means that you find out in what way people want to be helped rather than forcing your thoughts on them. Do you realize that Jesus would ask a blind man, “What would you have me do for you?” Did you see he asked the man at the pool at Bethesda whether he wants to be made whole? He would not force his help on anyone. That is courtesy. Do not allow the desire to help overrule the principle of courtesy. Do not drag people’s will in the mud because they are needy. Dignify others. 

Did you learn something? Practise it. 

© temilOluwa Ola, Eruwa

There is love in sharing

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