In our Come & See itinerary we moved from Braine-l’Alleud on Monday morning towards Fleurus. And on Tuesday we were in Wavre. One thing that marked me from our evangelisation on the streets was the response from some persons who said: I’m not interested. I wonder how on earth one would know something is not of interest without first giving it a chance? I learnt a lesson for myself.
Mixed responses to evangelisation
In every town we visited, in the evening, we made the spectacle of the religious nature in the parish church. So when we arrived in a town some among us went out on the streets to tell people about the spectacle and invite them to come in the evening. There were mixed reactions. Some raised their hand in total refusal as if to say don’t disturb. Others simply said no. Some people held out their hand to receive just the flyers. There were also those who stopped to listen to us. But there was another type of reaction that left me thinking.
It was the response from people who, in the manner quite dry, cut us short by saying I’m interested. They wouldn’t even give us a chance to explain anything to them. Their mind was already made up neither to listen nor to receive anything. I wonder how they got the intuition to know what we wanted to propose to them wouldn’t be of interest to them.
I guess among those who said I’m not interested could be persons searching for a meaning in their lives. And the spectacle we were proposing gave this possibility, not only religious meaning but also human. That’s why I think, possibly, some of these people missed the chance. Such experience allows me to reconsider my reaction to other people I meet on the street doing some promotion. I realise that I too, perhaps, may have missed opportunities whenever I reacted with I’m not interested attitude.
My lesson from I’m not interested attitude
In fact, rarely do I stop to listen to someone making a campaign or promotion on the street. One thing that comes to mind now is that this blog I write is about promoting humanity. It’s very likely that those people I refused to listen to, not even receiving their flyers; some of them could actually be involved in the same promotion for humanity. But because I closed my mind, I missed the occasion to unite with them and be enriched by what they had to offer. This experience is a point of conversion for me.
Now I realise that perhaps I’m not interested attitude is not a best response. It blocks true encounter with others. Of course, it’s not everything out there that may be of interest to me. Nevertheless, I lose nothing by giving a chance to another person to talk to me. On the contrary, I stand to gain. In fact, I may be surprised to discover how profoundly we share common interests.
I have learnt a lesson. I shall never consider anything to be garbage without first knowing what it is all about. I want to trust another person as someone coming to enrich my humanity. I choose to listen for it’s human to listen to others. And it’s also a way of growing together in our common humanity.