People Are Persons: An Introduction

People Are Persons: An Introduction

This is an introductory post in a new series on seeing and treating other people as actual humans. It sounds really simple, but there are so many ways in which we fail to do this.

So I was reading this really great book (click the pic for a good ole fashioned affiliate link – the Kindle version is on sale for $3.99!) yesterday. I’m only about a quarter of the way through – a full review is in order once I finish it – but I came to Ashley Williams’s chapter that really resonated with me and I posted this on IG and FB:

I’m reading Co-Laborers, Co-Heirs, a collection of pieces on the role of women in the #PCA, and this quote really stuck out to me. Here, Williams is talking about being a black single woman in the denomination, and the difference she notices between the way singles in particular are treated and celebrated in the church. This resonates because it is so true! We must be a people characterized by seeing and loving people because of their personhood. Single people are often treated as a separate category of church member – ESPECIALLY single women. It’s generally assumed that singles don’t want to be friends with married people, or at least with folks who have kids – which is completely bogus. The friendship between a single person and a married person (or, for that matter, between people or different ages) is not automatically a mentoring relationship because the married person is sharing their secrets with the single person who wants what their married friend has. What I’m saying is, singles are people too. Their promotions, their birthdays, their accomplishments and opportunities and gifts ought to be celebrated by their people, God’s family. They should be recognized and fully embraced as they are – not as a puzzle piece that we need to find a fit for. They have a place already – they belong to us, the Church.

Turns out that resonated with people. I suppose the time for this series is now.

Single women deserve their own post. (So do single men.) But for now, what I most want to say is this: People are people. Or, to put it in Charlotte Mason terms, people are persons. They are human beings, with innate dignity. It is so easy for us to think of people as less-than-persons in some way, even though our conscious minds would shrink at that idea. And as persons, we have got to start challenging that in ourselves. That’s what this series is all about.

[Don’t worry – there’ll be plenty of lighter posts mixed in because we can’t be serious all the time.]

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