Another Look At "The Golden Rule"

So in everything, do to others what you would have them do to you, for this sums up the Law and the Prophets.

~Matthew 7:12

It's such a simple rule--the "Golden Rule."  Just think of all the pain and anger and frustration and disappointment that could be avoided if we'd just follow that simple idea to treat other people the way we want to be treated.  But it's more than just that.  If you look at that first part, it says "so in everything." In everything?  What's that mean?  

Well, it means we're not just talking about being nice to people.  We're talking about empathy.  It means putting yourself in the place of other people.

It's not difficult for us to come up with a lot of reasons why we think we have the right to be rotten to somebody.  He was rotten to me first.  He has it coming.  What's good for the goose . . . 

We can use all those reasons to "justify" treating somebody in a way we certainly wouldn't want to be treated in the same situation. 

Sometimes we think the Golden Rule doesn't apply at work. Too often, we confuse having the right to make a certain decision that impacts others with doing what is right.  Those are, more often than not, two very different things.  Having the right, and doing what's right are not the same thing!  What that verse in Matthew is telling us, is when we're making decisions, we should be putting ourselves in the place of those that decision impacts first!  

How would I feel?  What would I think of my decision if I were in their place? 

The Golden Rule is a standard that Christians should live by, not just in their personal lives, but in every situation.  There's no "40-hour-a-week work exemption" for the Golden Rule.  

~Todd E. Creason


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