Saturday, April 21, 2012

How do I know?

A few days ago I learned of a devastating circumstance that pulled a family we know apart.  The circumstances and reasons for this break up are not important, but the guilt, hurt, sorrow, pain, anger, worry, fear and so many other emotions are swirling around because of it. 

Bleeding heart flowers (found on google images)

As I was driving home the other day thinking of this family my heart went out to them.  I had, to my shame, judged in my heart, one of the daughters, as being very flippant, unfriendly, rude at times, and very focused on herself.  When I learned of what was happening to their family I was convicted of the thoughts I had had towards her.  I had no idea what she was going through and yet I had judged her. 

As I drove along the interstate and I watched the people drive past me, I thought about all the other times I had gotten mad at people, judged them, assumed things about them, because of what I was seeing in their behavior.  If someone swerved into my lane while driving on the highway, my usual response was anger that someone was either on the phone or not paying attention to their driving and were putting the lives of others in jeopardy.  However, as I thought about this family and what I had assumed about them, it made me think about those people who swerved into my lane and I how do I know if they weren't wiping away tears of sadness because they lost someone dear to them? 

How do I know that the lady in line at the store who cut in line in front of me isn't hurrying to finish her grocery shopping, so she can comfort someone who was just diagnosed with cancer?

How do I know that the woman who walked past me with no smile or word of greeting, but walked right past without so much as acknowleding my existence (even when I extended a smile and greeting to her), may be a Mom who has kids at home that have been sick for several days and she is so tired that she truly did not see me?

How do I know the boy who won't help with cleaning up and seems rebellious and focused on himself, isn't struggling with fear at being told he's "not doing it the right way" and is hurting inside because of lies he believes about himself and others. Like, "I'm worthless",  or "They are thinking (you fill in the blank) about me".

How do I know the girl who came across as flippant, unfriendly, and disrespectful isn't carrying a scarred heart, filled with pain and the only way she knows how to deal with it is to seem "fine" and "in control" even though inside she is reeling with confusion?

How do I know that the people walking past me everyday are fine, because they are dressed okay, act okay, appear okay, when inside they could be falling apart, crying in pain, struggling with issues that we cannot comprehend? 

There is so much pain around us and sometimes it is so easy to forget that since everyone seems either "okay" or "rebellious" or "unfriendly" all the time, we assume it is just the way they are.  But we never know what is going on on the inside of a person.  We never know what a kind word, a smile, a caring heart, a listening ear, a forgiving spirit or a patient response will help someone.

A single bleeding heart
(found on google images.)
Jesus was the perfect example of forgivenss, love, friendliness, a non-judgemental spirit, but a compassionate and understanding heart filled with kindness and a desire to see the true person within.  Not the person they were trying to come across as.

I just wanted to share what was on my heart today.  I'm so thankful God loves me even though I mess up every single day.  As a "little Christ" my focus should be on turning what God gives to  me and sharing it with others, never caring if they "deserve" or "need" it.  Just doing it because God does it to me when I don't deserve it and He knows the needs of every person out there and I don't.

Praying you have a great weekend!

1 comment:

  1. This is so similar to something I wrote a while ago...we need this "refreshing" of our perspective so often, so human we are...