Recently I had an argument with a friend, someone I connect with on the basis that we share similar interest. As we were having the argument, and I was trying to explain my point of view and what I meant by actions rather than what was perceived, I was reminded of some things.
How painful it is to be misunderstood. Growing up I was often misunderstood and I hated it! I was naturally empathetic and didn’t understand that because I am, doesn’t mean everyone else is.
I’m reminded of a much older gentlemen who found me on Facebook a few years back. He liked the humanitarian in me and we began to connect on our mutual love of community involvement and wisdom. We’d converse on these topics and everything was cool, but when he’d mention making me his “heir” or that he was the most high god, we’d argue. I’d tell him his words were blasphemous and he’d get heated and we’d end up hanging up on one another. I’d block him, and it would be months before we’d speak again. I never intend to completely dismiss a person; I’m not 100% sure why that is or what combination of things contributes to it (that would be an interesting exploration). He was a wise man in ways. He was alone and deteriorating, by his own admission. I suppose I never really considered his mortality. I saw a man who used to be a pastor. A man who said his family had ostracized him because of his views. I saw a person, who loved ppl, who was needy in ways, who was arrogant in ways, misguided, and like everyone else needed a friend. I could at least do that. But when we argued, I never thought about love or how Jesus would respond. Never thought about the easy friendships I have with others who don’t share my same spiritual views. I just thought about how wrong he was, how I felt he snuck his views on me. It wasn’t a basis of our friendship. It never occurred to me that maybe he wasn’t extremely forthcoming because he was afraid I’d ostracize him as well. It never occurred to me that I could’ve been and should’ve been better to him until I went online recently and noticed he had died. And now I think of all the possible conversations we could’ve had. How I could’ve responded instead of how I did. How I could’ve been more compassionate, instead I was judgemental.
When you delve into the actions and decisions you make and you find what they mean, how they affect others; how they translate to others on a surface level, it can be discouraging. But when you dig deeper and you think about what those decisions reflect about you, inwardly, that can be even more damning. Once you start to pick apart yourself, your beliefs, thoughts, actions; what they mean; how and why they came about; it can be discouraging or disappointing. As someone who strives to be sincere, strives to be accepting, understanding and loving I realize there were are times I missed the mark. And either you hit it or you don’t. There aren’t any in betweens.
Sometimes you look in the mirror and you don’t like what you see. But it’s important that you keep looking until you love it. Yes, as humans we are forever works in progress, forever learning. Some lessons are more expensive than others. I hate learning at the expense of others. Once I recognize it, I try not to pay for it again.
Though we know stretching can be painful, it’s necessary for growth. Situations, relationships and experiences we find ourselves in are often a representation of ourselves. Something we need to learn. Something that needs to be revealed. A prompting for rising. Let’s get to the root.