Sunday, January 15, 2012

Growing up, reaching out

I learned a few valuable life lessons this week.

- Sometimes people will hurt others because they're not okay with themselves.
- Sometimes I'll be the one who gets hurt.
- Sometimes I'll hurt others, and that's not okay.
- I'll never get the opportunity to know the good in anyone unless I look for it.
- Sometimes it takes a death to see.
- Sometimes it's just not about the unkindness I've experienced.
- Sometimes it's about the love and passion someone shows in other areas of their lives.
- Above all, God's timing is perfect.

I've spent the last week a self-righteous, jealous, angry, vengeful mess.  I've said and felt some things that I'm ashamed of - things I'd be really quick to point out as wrong in someone else, I'm sure.  I've had to ask God to do a miracle in my mind and heart.  And boy did he show out.

On Friday, I felt that I needed to DO something to help.  So I spent 5 or 6 hours making food to take to a funeral dinner for a person who had done nothing but cause me harm and pain while living.  See, the reason I did that was because God revealed to me that there was more to this person and this situation than my narrow little mind could see.  Sitting in the funeral, I'm pretty sure I was crying as much as some of the close family and friends as I listened to the way this person had impacted the lives of those around her.  And I wondered if I had bothered to look for this side of her or if I had just gotten stuck in the victim role constantly holding a grudge and refusing to forgive her.

The truth is, this person has value - to her kids, her siblings, her friends, and even people who didn't even know her.  I had dismissed her value because I felt that she didn't acknowledge MY value.  I learned she had a passion for justice, for family, for life.  So what if she didn't have a passion for ME.  News flash:  Louise is not the center of the universe.  Ouch.

So anyway, God helped me do what I could to alleviate some of the weight on the rest of the family.  I'm so thankful for the experiences I've had over the past four days or so.  What a difference a change in perspective can make!

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