Since my wife and I have moved out into the country, things have gotten much quieter. We do miss some aspects of being in a subdivision, one of which is Halloween. Before we moved, we lived in a city north of Little Rock where Halloween was a big deal. People would bring their kids to the entrance of the neighborhood, park their cars, and everyone walked from house to house. It was like one huge block party, and much safer for the young ones concentrating on the treats and paying no attention to the traffic.
Some years we would sit out front in lawn chairs and just enjoy the sights and sounds of giggles, laughter and excitement of the children. But I think the best interaction with the trick-or-treaters came when you waited inside for them to ring the doorbell. I would open up the door and pretend to be scared if there was a monster, impressed if it was a superhero, or in awe if it was a princess standing on our doorstep. No matter what the costume was, the question remained the same – “Now who are you?”
We label ourselves as adults with many titles like Mr., Mrs., Doctor, Professor, Sergeant and so on. It seems we get our identity from the jobs we do. People can relate to what we are easier than of who we are. I had an encounter with a famous person once, who quite frankly was very demanding. When he didn’t get the “responses” he thought he deserved, he asked me, “don’t you know who I am?” I answered, “With all due respect sir, I know what you are. I don’t know who you are.” Taken aback for a moment, he listened as I went on to explain that I was very familiar with the job he did, but as a person I didn’t know him. While I wasn’t being confrontational, I was not going to play into the “greatest of all” attitude either.
The Pharisees, Sadducees and Scribes opened the door when Jesus came before them. They asked “now who are you?” Jesus was constantly teaching and referring them to the words of the prophets when He was attempting to open their eyes. Try as He may, he couldn’t convince them He was truly who He said He was; the Messiah!
Was it the arrogance of the religious leaders, or were they so ingrained in thousands of years of teaching, memorizing, and study of the law? Many times, they even approached Jesus with an attitude of, “don’t you know who we are?”
It is so easy to be superficial. But only going to that level prevents us from learning about others, and truly getting to know the treasures God has placed in our paths. Get to know people, and who they are, not just what they are. If we will, our friendship list will grow exponentially. Be kind, be caring, and show the love of Christ this week to others.