How Much You Care

“People don’t care about how much you know until they know how much you care.” B Haley, drummer with Toby Mac and The Diverse City

John Fischer, pastor and Jesus Movement worship leader/composer, has a blog, email newsletter, and podcast called The Catch. (Get it, fisher–catch?). This week he interviewed B Haley. B is drummer and speaker with Toby Mac and The Diverse City–a Christian music group.

By the way, B is African-American. Part of the subject of the interview was the strained race relations we’re seeing in America right now. I don’t remember the exact quote, but B said that what we need is to forget the divisive language and use Jesus language. He never asked who you were or what race or whatever. He just cared about people he met and asked how he could help them.

B says, remember how Jesus gave us the command “Love others as we love ourselves”? That means we love others as brothers/sisters. That’s the language Christ-followers need to be using.

Then he said something that sounds trite until you digest it, “People don’t care how much you know until they know how much you care.”

Walking up to someone in emotional distress and quoting from page (whatever) from the DSM and saying, “Just think better thoughts and you’ll feel better.” Or saying to someone, “I’ll pray for you” and then leaving them.

Quoting a scripture may show your knowledge, but how much does it really help someone?

What do we need to do?

Listen. Active listening.

Many people (most?) never feel like someone cares enough to really listen to them. When I hear husbands talk about how they suggested all manner of remedies and solutions to their wives–only to be met with indifference or worse–I counsel them to listen. “She doesn’t need solutions,” I tell them. “She’s smart enough to figure that out. She just wants someone to listen to her.” Then I make my own feeble attempt to practice what I preach.

Sometimes I think it’s my calling in life to listen. Ask me a question about something I’m passionate about, and I’ll talk all day. But for some reason, people sense that they can talk to me, and that I’ll listen with empathy. But it helps them. And I’m here to serve. I can listen for hours.

And I get along with all races and socioeconomic groups. Always have. Don’t know why.

I wish I could teach this to everyone. And our lives, the lives of those we care for, the lives of our community, and the shape of the world would all be so much better if even just all Christians could do that. Let alone all the other people of the world.

Show how much you care by taking the time to listen. Then you can help guide.

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