The PAL Approach
By S. Bill Jimenez
PAL: Pray. Accept. Love. Three action principles that will help us in being a true friend to other people. ”No man is an island, entire of itself; every man is a piece of the continent, a part of the main,” wrote John Donne. As social beings, with spiritual, mental and emotional dimensions, we need to relate to God and other people.
The world has witnessed quarrels, estrangements, wars, etc. There is sad evidence of love and friendship deficit. Although most often difficult, let’s strive to be a pal of other people. As the psalmist reminds us, “How good and pleasant it is when brothers live together in unity!” (Psalm 133:1).
Pray. Praying is a simple way of beginning a friendship. T. DeWitt reminds us: “The mightiest thing you can do for a man is to pray for him.” The Lord Jesus is our best example on praying. He even prayed for his enemies: “Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing” (Luke 23:34).
Accept. It takes time for people to change. We can start our friendship with people by accepting them as they are. Acceptance begins by not being judgmental. ”Let us therefore make every effort to do what leads to peace and to mutual edification” (Romans 14:19). Always, God’s will be done!
Love. ”Love must be sincere. Hate what is evil; cling to what is good. Be devoted to one another in brotherly love. Honor one another above yourselves,” the apostle Paul tells us (Romans 12:9-10). Paul also writes: ”Love is patient, love is kind… Love never fails” (1 Corinthians 13:4, 8).