I wonder what kind of world it would be if everyone treated everyone exactly the way they treated others. What if I treated you the way you treat me? What if you treat me the way I treat you? Would it be a better world? Or perhaps it would be a much more cruel world. That’s scary to imagine.
When I take orders at my job and a customer is rude, what if I were rude back? That would fall under I could get fired, and my returning the favor of rudeness would not make the world a better place. But sometimes we just want to set them straight don’t we?
Of course there are those that are always rude with no regard for others, not just on occasion. I wonder what their end will be. I believe that there is always hope for anyone.
What if I don’t take the time to speak to you, it would be the natural response for you not to speak to me as well. Sadly the natural reasoning here would not lead to any friendships, just each of us thinking that the other wouldn’t be a good friend anyway. A better world? Nah. Hopefully one of us would come to our senses and get past petty things and we just might be on our way to a better world.
What if I cut you off in traffic? And in return you run me off the road screaming and cussing. And of course you could justify your response; after all I cut you off. My driving is okay, but I do wonder where the world is in such a hurry to get to.
What if I only talked to you when I needed something? And you in return stopped talking to me all together? I would think that would be reasonable. A better world though? No.
What if we treated others the way we would like to be treated? If I wanted you to treat me with respect what if I took the first step and treated you with respect first? Of course if we treated everyone like this we have no guarantee that they would get the picture and respect others as well. But what if just a handful of people started treating others nicer and with more thought just because you decided to be a little nicer and a bit more patient and a little less judgmental? Would just a few be worth it? I say yes, a better world.
What if I never talked to you because I just didn’t have time to? But maybe you decided that you wouldn’t let a friendship go just because I’m not perfect. And you show me what true friends are about. A better world, yes, it’s a start.
If you cussed me out and talked behind my back I could do the same to you. A better world? No.
If we lie, cheat, and steal, and the ones that we do it to do the same to us, we might be deserving of it, but what a heartbreaking world.
There is so much hate in the world and decisions and prejudices are made against others based on one bad choice and sometimes deservingly so. But possibly the world would be a better place if we treated others better than we thought they should be treated. Hopefully others will treat us better than we know that we deserve to be.
What if I were mean to you and instead of you being mean right back you decide to be nice to me? Yes that’s a difficult one that I struggle with. Mean deserves mean right? The scary thing is if that is true then I’m afraid of what I deserve. Of course we all know the statement, ‘Just kill them with kindness.’ It’s a nice saying that might make you feel good but I don’t think killing others with fake kindness will make a better world.
What if we just do what’s best for us, would that make it a better world? I think that’s why the world is like it is today. Looking out for ourselves and not others causes us to think that we are more important than others. Are we?
I’m not perfect and it’s a cold world, but what kind of excuse is that? And I would be the first to agree that in this world we have to be careful and to use our common sense. Just turn on the news and you have good reason to suspect that everyone’s motives are less than truthful. It’s easy not to reach out to anyone and not to show kindness to anyone apart from your selected few. It’s even easier to justify it, I do it myself. And we can’t be nice to everyone and friends with everyone, I get that, I understand it.
But we can be nice to more than we do. We can show kindness to a few more than we do. We can take the time to help someone in need that might not even be our friend, not yet. We can stop and say hello to someone that most others wouldn’t. We can get mad less and show forgiveness more.
If we took the time to treat others with respect and like they were important it might not be the easiest thing to do because we normally just go on our way and are focused on our goals and desires, but it would make a difference in this world. A better place.
Of course some might reject your kindness, but that’s okay. It will make a difference to someone. And if it’s only one it will be worthwhile.
I know, but what if everyone’s mean and cold to you? Well, you don’t want to be like them do you? Truthfully when you treat others with respect whether they are nice to you or not you will be happy knowing that you are making the world a better place. One matters. You matter and you can make a difference.
Since I wrote this whole article without mentioning God, I will leave us with one more question to ponder. What if Jesus treated those of us that call ourselves Christians the same way that we treat Him?