This has really been on my mind all day.. i tried taking a nap but i just can’t shake this thought in my head. Sometimes it is very very hard for me to love others. I’m not talking about my friends and family.. they are easy to love. I’m talking about strangers, and people i see on the street, or pass by in Starbucks, friends of friends, and the list goes on. I don’t know why that is. It varies though, from circumstances to situations to if its that time of the month , but i guess I have a pretty low tolerance to people. Not everyone really, there’s some people, or strangers, I really don’t mind.. but some others just really get under my skin. And it’s not big differences that bother me like race, sex, political or religious views or anything like that. Its extremely simple things. Like it could be that person is talking too loud, or too soft, or too weird, or too much. It could be the way someone says something to someone I know that i just don’t like. The way someone smiles or posts stupid annoying things on Facebook. Just really petty things of that sort.
Something popped in my head today, and I have been trying to find who wrote it, or if I read it in a book at all. I have read so many books that the words and stories all start to blend together and I forget who said what or if its a combination of my own thoughts with theirs. Regardless, this thought popped in my head today. It was how can we not love one another? I mean everyone. If we were ALL, every sing human on this earth, created in the same image and likeness of God that we and our friends and families (the people that are easy to love) why is it so hard to love others? Strangers? Random people you see everyday? And i wonder why it is so hard for me to love or to like everybody? The ones that get under our skin?
I guess I am a pretty aggressive person.. kind of a mean person. When I was little I was the bossiest little thing to walk this Earth. I was mean to my friends and my family. As I changed schools and grew up I am not so sure if that changed so much.. maybe a part of it did but then backslide as i entered into High School. High School really is awful.. kids are so brutally mean, and everyone is just trying to survive, at least I was. Influences and relationships I chose resulted in the actions I took and those actions turned into habits. I let those habits take over my mind and now although I am out of high school (for some time now… about 4 years? Where does the time go!) those influences and relationships left a deep scar in my mind on how I should think of others. Or maybe I really always had a mean heart all my life.. I always wondered about that, its a scary thought. But then I am reminded of Genesis 1:27. “So God created man in His own image; in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them” And since we know the son of God is Jesus .. It is true that God then created us in the same likeness that he created his only begotten son, Jesus Christ. So I was not born of a mean heart.. I just got lost and tangled along the way.
This is very powerful to me, because Jesus is the most loving man I have ever come to know. I mean truly loving. Not just that conditional love crap. Or the kind of love that is only a commodity. Or the fake kind of love where you say to someones face you like them and a soon as they’re gone start talking smack. He had true love for everyone. He looked past peoples quirks, mistakes, doubts, flaws and saw the good in them that God created. He was not like me at all and he’s not like many christians I know either. He was never quick to judge, he never thought he was better than anyone or treated anyone in that manner. He was selfless, looking to help and spread love. Although I know that me and many other Christians have fallen very short of how Jesus’ message, this is powerful to me because we are created in the same image and likeness of Him. That means it is very possible for me to change my ways and walk more like Jesus. So with His help, I too can spread love and joy and peace.. I just got to stop getting in the way… and something even more powerful to me, if we are all created in the same image.. His image.. not just me, but you, and you, and that guy you hate, or that girl you find so annoying.. we are all created in the same image. That really changes the whole realm of things doesnt it? That image is God.. who I love. So maybe its not so hard to love others..
The book I am reading was talking about confessing to everyone for not being the Christian they want to be and I too am confessing to you… “It would feel so good to apologize, to apologize for the Crusades, for Columbus and the genocide he committed in the Bahamas in the name of God, apologize for the missionaries who landed in Mexico and came up through the West slaughtering Indians in the name of Christ. I wanted so desperately to say that none of this was Jesus, and I wanted so desperately to apologize for the many ways I had misrepresented the Lord. I could feel that I had betrayed the Lord by judging, by not being willing to love the people He had loved and only giving lip service issues of human rights” Donald goes on to say to his peers at Reed College, “Jesus said to feed the poor and to heal the sick. I have never done very much about that. Jesus said to love those who persecute me. I tend to lash out especially if I feel threatened, you know, if my ego gets threatened. Jesus did not mix His spirituality with politics. I grew up doing that. It got in the way of the central message of Christ. I know that was wrong, and I know that a lot of people will not listen to the words of Christ because people like me, who know Him, carry our own agendas in the conversation rather than just relaying the message Christ wanted to get across…”
I pray that you forgive me and my fellow brothers and sisters. I pray that I receive healing and continue to get revealed to myself of how I am and how I amnot being like Jesus. I pray that the conviction in my heart to change stays and I pray that you receive my love.