Along time ago, my dad worked for the Tom’s Potato chip company. I had the pleasure of riding in his truck with him for many summers! It was some early-morning’s getting up around 5 AM going to load a truck full of candy and chips to be delivered to clients and stores that day. When I was young I thought of it only as getting to spend a lot of time with my dad, but as I got older I realized it was much more than “Just a job”, it was interaction with people all around.
I can recall several establishments that my dad would go into work. Some were chain stores and some were simple stores inside of a home. I remember going into each establishment sometimes thinking “wow this is an exciting place to be because look how big this building is” or “look how poor this family is because they are selling potatoes chips and peanuts out of the front of their homes”.
We were in rich areas of the town, and we were in poor areas. The one thing that I noticed regardless of where we were was how my father treated every person in every store. It was never about the color of their skin or the financial status. My dad always treated them with respect. Yes there were times that some of the clients couldn’t pay their bills because they had not sold enough merchandise, And I can remember my dad saying “that’s okay, I will get it next week” so they could have something to sell in their store.(by the way, very few people would take advantage of you back then)
What are the things that worked as he worked in this business? Each time we would go in, he was never rushed to get out. (unless it was a good day to go fishing). I think about the time that he would take to listen, share, and have concern for each client he served. As a teenager sometimes I wished he would get out of that building just so I can get home! Now, I know better. People mattered to him, from the oldest of the generations when he would talk about World War II, Korea, Vietnam, he loved talking about his experiences in the military and he was also concerned about others that serve our country. Maybe it was the youngest children that would be around that he would play with, laugh with and yes, would spoil a little. (Did I mention he was a candyman)!
It was later in his life that he realized that it just wasn’t the people that matter, but it was also the soul of the person that mattered. In his last year’s of work, I remember conversations changing from concern of normal every day activities and things to matters of the heart, matters of the soul. He was not afraid to express and to share how everyone needed to know who Jesus is!
Why am I mentioning all of this? It’s really simple, People have souls, souls that matter to God and God wants ALL of the souls to come back home to Him. How can this happen if WE don’t care about people? How can this happen if WE don’t care about souls? The truth is….It will not happen.
So do yourself a favor,
LOVE people, ALL people. Listen to them, even when you think you cannot. LISTEN.
RESPECT all around you! Red and Yellow, Black and White…you know the rest! Love, not just the outside person, but the soul inside of them.
SHARE, the Love of God. Jesus.
Be a People Person, Be the CHURCH!
P.S. Thanks Dad!