Jesus was walking down a city street surrounded by people. He was going to the home of an anxious father whose daughter was dying. Suddenly, He stopped and asked, “Who touched me?” His disciples were bewildered: “Master, the multitude throng thee and press thee, and sayest thou, Who touched me?” A woman came forward and revealed that she had touched the hem of His robe and had been healed. Only after acknowledging her faith did the Savior continue moving forward (Mark 5:22-34, Luke 8:41-48).
I love the following phrase from Luke’s account of this story: “When the woman saw that she was not hid…” She had intended to remain inconspicuous, and under normal circumstances might easily have done so. But the Savior was aware of her and took the time to acknowledge the important event that she had just experienced.
During the Savior’s visit to the American continent following His death and resurrection, He shared the Sermon on the Mount. Then, “He cast his eyes round about on the multitude,” and saw that some of them had questions. Before proceeding to His next topic, He took time to clarify the topic causing the confusion (3 Nephi 15:1-10).
Later the same day, He announced that it was time to go; He needed to visit another group of people. But after making this announcement,
He cast his eyes round about again on the multitude, and beheld they were in tears, and did look steadfastly upon him as if they would ask him to tarry a little longer with them.
And he said unto them: Behold, my bowels are filled with compassion towards you.
Have ye any that are sick among you? Bring them hither. Have ye any that are lame, or blind, or halt, or maimed, or leprous, or that are withered, or that are deaf, or that are afflicted in any manner? Bring them hither and I will heal them, for I have compassion upon you; my bowels are filled with mercy.3 Nephi 17:5-7
President Thomas S. Monson gave the following advice:
Send that note to the friend you’ve been neglecting; give your child a hug; give your parents a hug; say “I love you” more; always express your thanks. Never let a problem to be solved become more important than a person to be loved.“Finding Joy in the Journey,” General Conference, October 2008
In 1831, as a group of eleven church leaders traveled down the Missouri River in canoes, the Lord admonished them to be more aware of the people around them:
It is not needful for this whole company of mine elders to be moving swiftly upon the waters, whilst the inhabitants on either side are perishing in unbelief.Doctrine and Covenants 61:3
An editorial in the Church News provided the following commentary on this passage:
We should not become so busy, as we move swiftly down the “waters of life” that we neglect those on the shore, either members of our families or our neighbors who may be perishing and are in need of our help.“Take Time to Make Time,” Church News, 9 November 1996
Today, I will strive to be more aware of the people around me. I will recognize the importance of interacting with them meaningfully and will take the time to pay attention to them personally rather than focusing exclusively on my next task.