How do you respond to interruptions during your day? Do you get exasperated, lower your head and just try to plow right through?  Or do you make the person interrupting you feel valued?

I once shared an office with a man who helped everyone with their IT issues.  I’m not sure how he got anything done because he was continually interrupted with computer questions and problems. Yet this man handled these disruptions in his day with exceeding grace.  He didn’t sigh or moan.  He rarely asked them if they could come back later.  He made people feel like the issue they were having was more important than anything else he was doing.  To this day, the example he set inspires me to be better in these situations.

One thing that stands out in the life of Jesus is how He turned interruptions into opportunities.  Sometimes it provided Him with an unexpected opportunity to speak into the life of a stranger.  Sometimes it provided Him an opportunity to display His character, His love, or His power. Sometimes He took the opportunity to pause and reflect and commune with His Father. People mattered to him more than his agenda.  From the woman who touched his robe for healing to Nicodemus’questions, Jesus made people feel completely seen and heard. 

I wonder what we could do to handle interruptions with grace like Jesus.  Put our cell phone down? Close our laptop or tablet? Don’t try to read email while also trying to listen? Use their name in the conversation? Ask them if there is anything else we can do to help?  What might we do via our words, actions, body posture, facial expressions, and tone of voice to turn interruptions from an inconvenience to a grace filed encounter seasoned with the love of Jesus?

That should provide us all with a challenge this week.

Live this week on purpose,
Ron Klopfenstein

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