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Thinking of God with Larry Sheehy: We must work at being more sensitive to others
Larry Sheehy mug web
Larry Sheehy

I heard about a woman who was so sensitive she even lied about the age of her dog!

Sensitivity is an important part of human nature. I suppose that everyone -perhaps without exception - is sensitive in some way to the world and the people, creatures and objects in it. Our bodies are sensitive to physical conditions. Our minds are sensitive to the intellectual and emotional climate in which we live. And God has made us sensitive to spiritual matters as well. In all three areas _ physical, mental and spiritual - our sensitivity is fluid, always changing. We will be more or less perceptive of our surroundings, depending on the various factors that influence us.

Sometimes we are too sensitive. This usually results from damage done when the nerve system has been damaged. A bad sunburn really heightens the skin's sensitivity. If you get some salt in even a small cut, and you will know what sensitivity is all about! This is the body's natural defenses reacting against danger. Likewise, when emotional or spiritual damage occurs, the natural tendency is to put up defenses against the perceived threat.

We need to be aware of this sensitivity in ourselves, as well as others, especially as it relates to the emotional and spiritual nature.

Regarding ourselves, we should work at keeping our emotions under control. Seek to find and maintain a healthy balance. Being overly sensitive can keep us "on edge" all the time, looking for negative comments and actions from experiences and the personal relations we have. At the same time, we need to avoid a hardened mentality of total unconcern about how we live and relate to others. Spiritually, we should seek to heighten our sensitivity as much as possible, without becoming a spiritual recluse.

In our relationships with others, it's vital we seek to be more sensitive. How will my words and/or actions affect them? Will it help them or hurt them? Christians are to seek to "encourage one another and build each other up" in the church (1 Thessalonians 5:11). Sometimes that can even involve confronting one another regarding sin. But we must always be sensitive to the effect it may have on those we are trying to help. Love is never "self-seeking," but is always protective, trusting, hopeful and steadfast in the effort to relate to others in a meaningful and godly way (1 Corinthians 13:5- 7).

Thank God for sensitivity. This would be an unfeeling world without it!

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