First Impressions by Nancy Vandemark

“It takes just a quick glance, maybe three seconds, for someone to evaluate you when you meet for the first time. In this short time, the other person forms an opinion about you based on your appearance, your body language, your demeanor, your mannerisms, and how you are dressed.

With every new encounter, you are evaluated and yet another person's impression of you is formed. These first impression can be nearly impossible to reverse or undo, making those first encounters extremely important, for they set the tone for all the relationships that follows.

So, whether they are in your career or social life, it's important to know how to create a good first impression. This article provides some useful tips to help you do this. (Mind Tools, an Internet resource)”.

We all know we have first impressions of people; sometimes they are invalid, especially from a Christian perspective. I have made it a point whenever I meet someone new, or dealing with a problem with another person, to think of the verse Philippians 4:8.

Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things.

This verse is probably meant to focus on the wonderful things we have to be thankful for even in times of trial. But I often use it in dealing with people. We are all made in God’s image, so I try to think about “whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—,” in the person I am interacting with.

Our point of view can affect our first impression of people. Years ago, I met a woman at a get together at a mutual friend’s home. There were several families there. Most of the women were in the kitchen chattering while preparing the food for the meal. I noticed a woman at the doorway to the kitchen. There was not a smile on her face as she glanced around the room, then turned and walked away. My first impression was how rude she was for not wanting to join the rest of us women. Then I thought of Philippians 4:8. So I left the kitchen to find her to find out why she did not join us.

I was to find out later, she has an introvert personality and crowds were not easy for her to deal with. We struck up a wonderful conversation as she shared with me the studies she had done on various women in the Bible.

The woman was Scarlett Stough. That meeting and conversation would years later lead to our team ministry of Women in Christ.

We need to be careful in our first impressions and our interactions with other people. We never know who God may put in our lives to help us, to help them, or for us to work together to serve his purpose.

Volume 11 Issue 3 | Notes from Nancy | Women in Christ Commentary | Bible Study Guide | Abundance of the Heart | Exhortation | Book Review

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