A person who is a bright light is noticed by the people around them. They are noticed, not in a negative way, they are noticed because they are happy most of the time, they talk nice to others, they don’t get angry, they don’t complain, and they don’t gossip. If you didn’t know better you would guess that they just got some amazing news, but they are like this most of the time, and nobody has that many unexpected jackpots in their life.
I had a defining experience in my life some years ago. At a wedding Patty and I were invited to the couple who hosted the event hired someone to walk around and take candid videos of the activities all night long. A couple of weeks after the event we got a copy of the video. It had been edited so instead of 2 hours of boring video there was about 40 minutes. I don’t think I had ever watched myself on a screen for that long before. Because it was a small group in a relatively small house I could see myself on the video most of the time in the background. As I watched myself I couldn’t believe how bored I looked, to the point of even looking grumpy. I watched as people talked to me, and I appeared to be uninterested in what they were talking about, and I was embarrassed as I watched myself be rude to people simply by being unengaged in what was going on. I didn’t remember that anything bad had happened that day to cause me to act like this. I asked Patty if I seemed “out of it” at the reception and she said no, I acted pretty much the way I always do.
I am an introvert in temperament, and my default setting is to be uninvolved in conversation, and it looked like I had shifted myself into neutral and was just acting the way I am, making little to no effort to enjoy the people who were around me. As I got to thinking about it, the worst part was Patty saying that was how I usually acted. I occasionally will make a joke saying, “I will take anybody fishing once, and a few people twice”. As I watched the video I thought, I wouldn’t invite myself to go fishing a second time. I thought to myself, “I can choose to act differently than what is easy and natural”.
I bought and read the book “Relational Intelligence”, in fact I read it several times, and as a result of the deep conviction I felt I wrote out my “Personal Social Mission Statement”, which goes like this, ” I will honor people by choosing to enjoy my time with them, and I will act in such a way that they enjoy their time with me.” I knew that it wouldn’t be an overnight transformation, but I also knew that as I reviewed my “Mission Statement”, and continually made the effort to change I would become a bright light that would attract people to my Savior.