Disclaimer: This is NOT a post about Amy Grant’s “Angels” song. Look it up, young people.
In Costa Rica, I am pleasantly surprised at how kind drivers are. They let each other in to traffic. They honk, wave, or flash their lights to give you the right of way.
There’s this kindness built into their culture.
And as I’m driving and someone in front of me lets someone in, I’m thinking, “Why would you do that?!”
But if I look up the street 100 feet, I’ll inevitably notice that I’m not really losing out because there’s traffic up ahead anyway. I would’ve stopped soon anyway. And it’s like this all the time.
So it didn’t cost me anything, but it was kind. And in my (United States of) American way of thinking, I’m just so efficient, so ready to get there as quickly as I can. I’m trying to be productive, to get something done here! I want to be as expedient as possible.
Because of the relational culture here, there are priorities in the culture other than just being efficient, than just getting the job done.
I’m kinda impressed and I bet it feels nice to be kind and make someone’s moment by expressing that kindness. Especially if you don’t just do it once as an experiment, but “as a way of doing things.” I bet it feels nice to live that way.
And what if you thought that way in your worship team, at your rehearsals? Have you already been making the application?
- I’m going to be kind to someone here.
- I’m not going to be so rushed, so task oriented.
- I’m going to be kind to my team mates by asking how they’re doing and actually giving them space for a real answer.
- I’m going to be relational and loving.
- I’m going to be a little less focused on productivity and efficiency, getting there the fastest way possible.
- I’m going to take time to pray together when someone shares that they are not doing so well.
But back to driving in Costa Rica, there is one important caveat, one exception to the kindness.
You know those dashed or solid lines between lanes? Motorcyclists consider those lines to be their lane…in between other cars.
And if you’re stopped for any reason, they maze around your car literally only inches from taking out a mirror, scuffing your bumper, or dinging your doors. I’m not just talking about passing you, but turning in front of you and the car ahead of you. Snakes!
(Spanish lesson for the day alert) They are atrevidos! It means bold or daring, but insolent or rude would be more fitting.
And we all have “motorcyclists” on our teams…or have been them ourselves. People who act like the rules of kindness and order don’t apply.
But our teams need to be safe places. Sometimes that means we need to be more relational, less efficient.
And if you’re on a team that’s naturally wired more relational (and less efficient), do be like the driver behind the driver that’s being kind. That’s been me saying, “Come on, can’t you hurry up?! Why are you letting them out? Why are you being so kind?!” (Honest confessions)
Don’t be that person. Get with the kind culture and enjoy your time together. Have fun. It’s a great road we get to share together!
ps. Have you bought your tickets for Drums and Sound Clinic on February 6 and 8? You can win a cymbal pack or a $1000 drum mic kit!!