People are complicated. They have so much depth, so many layers. And sometimes, they have all that but on the outside they don’t look like it. Maybe they look shallow, maybe you just can’t find a connection. So you write them off as not worth the time it would take to get to know them. Probably they notice and then work extra hard to make sure you don’t notice that they noticed. They retreat farther into themselves and hide behind a mask because they lack confidence in themselves and you just confirmed their own personal fear. That they aren’t worth the time.
People are worth the time. It’s amazing to think that every single person was made in the Image of God and has an eternal soul.
I have nothing against casual talk. It’s a great way of learning the personality of a person, which is a major part of who they are. Sometimes, friendly causal small talk might be just what a person needs to feel more at home, more like a part of a whole. On the other hand, if this is the “only” way you know how to talk, you’re the one who’s going to come across as shallow to them…
To really understand their character (and they yours), you have to get a bit more in depth. And you do that, and they will surprise you with a much richer soul than you could have imagined and also their own set of problems. You thought you were the only person who has a fear of failure, a secret jealousy of others’ success, faced loneliness, fill in the blank? Wrong. But here is where you (and they) can follow Christ’s example and love them just as they are. Everyone has problems and everyone needs some changing. If you really want to change someone though, telling them so, how, what, and why is not the best way to start. Instead, be a listening ear, a good example, and (occasionally) a timely word.
Everyone inherently wants to be a part of something bigger; it’s the way we were created and it’s super lonely to be a loner. If you want friends, you have to take the initiative. Smile at everyone, start a conversation with whoever’s there, and remember that every person is really really important! :)
Mark 12:31, “And the second is like, namely this, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. There is none other commandment greater than these.”