Who We Are

It is hard to understand the whys and hows of human relationships. Sometimes these interactions astound and touch my deepest parts for their tremendous propensity to kindness. And yet sometimes they disappoint beyond what mere words can express.

Why are our connections with one another so prone to such wild swings of the pendulum?

For here we are, all just walking around inside our little outward shell, thin veneer- pretending to be brave when we don’t always feel brave. Pretending to be strong when we don’t always feel strong. Putting on our game face even when the game is over. Showing up even when we don’t have the strength to take another step. We are all, I believe, giving this ‘here and now’ our best shot- this moment, this day, this life. We are who we are- cover-ups, disguises, masks and all. Doing what we have to so as to keep our head above water, to stay afloat. And it’s a hard-knock life sometimes. Hard enough trying to get by without having another soul, another Body: push you over. Knock you down. Hard enough trying to be a person living through the day without having another soul, another Body step all over you. Rain on your parade.

Isn’t it high time we gave each other a chance?

Is it so hard to see ourselves, our weakness- as through viewing our brother’s face? So hard to see our own proclivity to sorrow by looking in our sister’s eye?

She orders a coffee and a chicken sandwich for her husband. And all the while, she is given the five-star treatment by the waitress on duty. No request denied, no favor spared. She is Chosen. Somehow, special. But when it comes to him- he who is different, suddenly the mood alters. The temperature drops or so it seems. He who is seen as ‘other’ is disdained, disparaged, despised. She wonders, as she waits for the remainder of her order: why? Why him? Why her? Why such vast discrepancy? Why is she singled out to receive the good and he left to suffer the mockery, the subtle abuse? Why such different treatment when the same blood that courses through her veins, pumps slow and steady through his also?

Are we that blind that we can no longer see each other for who we truly are?

And who are we anyway? Who were we made to be?

We were made to be His Beloved. Loved, cherished, held, treasured. Longed for by the Father and precious in His sight. And when He sees us, He sees the beauty in the workmanship, the exquisite detail in the masterpiece. He sees us for the value and worth and tremendous significance we were designed for.

Each one of us.

And He doesn’t judge us for the fading shell without, that holds us.  Piece by fragile piece.  That damaged armor we wear to protect, we put on so to endure.  Doesn’t judge us for our persona.  Our outward presentation- He just loves us.  Loves us for the lasting treasure we are within.

And because He loves us, we too can love. Wildly, unabashedly, freely- with abandon.

We are free to love each other.

We are Loved.

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A Lesson in Judging

Today.  I was reminded yet again.  For what stands to be the thousandth time.  (It is a lesson in progress.)  That I do not know everyone’s story.  Nor do I know all the reasons why or for what reason people do the things they do.  And neither can I know all the minute and significant details in a person’s life that cause them to act in certain ways.  To exhibit certain behaviors.   To say and do the things they do.

So why do I…why do WE think we have the right to judge.

Collectively, we as human beings form opinions based on what WE would do in certain situations.  “Since X is doing this, they must be feeling this.”  Or, “Since Y did this, it must mean that they don’t like that.”  We try to play God, getting inside each other’s heads.

Reading each other’s minds.  Figuring each other out by comparing other people to the standards we have set for acceptable and non-acceptable behaviors.  Standards we have set for ourselves.  Rightly or wrongly.

And in doing such- in judging one another,  we not only discredit ourselves.  We do a disservice to each other.  Because people are more complicated, more intricate than all that.  We are so much more than someone else’s opinion of us.  Someone else’s judgment.   Someone else’s standards or convictions or beliefs or attitudes toward us.  We are more.  So much more than all that.

And whether we be Child, or Woman, or Man.  We are worthy.   Worthy of being understood.  Of being listened to.  Of being given the benefit of the doubt.

And whether we be Blue Collar, White Collar or No Collar.   We are valuable.  We are feelings, mind and Soul.  We are story.

Stories worth being told.

And whether I think I know your story really well.  Got it all figured out.  Or whether I could just care less.  Believing what I wish.  It still stands that a person’s story is worthy.  It is significant.  It is their history.  Past, present and future waiting to unfurl.

A story of great consequence in the history of that solitary soul.   Valuable.  It is gold.  Because a person’s story is full of layers.  Dimensions.  Depth. There is so much more than meets the eye.  We must remember this.  All is not what meets the eye.

It never is.

Everybody’s got a story.  It’s how we respect the story- how we value the story.   That makes all the difference.