An acute characteristic of a Christian ought to be that he or she is very friendly. I have heard many congregations say that they are the friendliest church around, but most times when you attend you can barely get a handshake.
Christ seemed to have a natural way with people. It always fascinates me that crowds of sinner hung around just to hear what he had to say. Jesus was always gentle with them. He never made the feel like they were sinners. He never made them feel like he was better than them. And he never made them feel like they didn’t belong.
But beyond making them feel welcomed, through his words he always gave them something valuable – the words of life.
Every moment was like a teaching moment for Jesus. He never lost sight of his mission and he understood that how he greeted people would directly effect his ministry. He never gave people a license to sin or made them feel comfortable in sin. What Jesus did was profound: He accepted where they were in life and gave them words to move them forward.
The woman he met at the well in John 4 is a great example. Despite the obvious differences of Jesus being Jewish and the woman being a Samaritan, Jesus did something to show her instant acceptance. He asked her for a drink of water. When she heard the question she had a hard time digesting it. She knew he didn’t have anything to drink with meaning that he would have to drink from her cup.
That’s not something a Jewish person would have done at that time. This would have been worse than a White person drinking from the “colored” fountain in Mississippi in 1930!
Jesus with one question did more to build a relationship with someone different than many Christians do today. To have the same Spirit of Christ we have to have the ability and desire to walk in his steps.