Mirror Image: The Curse of Being Human

Tuesday, February 19, 2013
    I get bugged sometimes. I'm not talking the "pet peeve" bug status... like the inward struggle I have not to scream every time someone cuts the corner when they turn left, or the the way my stomach churns when Pink comes on the radio. I'm talking that kind of bugged when you want to grab someones face and yell "WHAT THE HECK WERE YOU THINKING?!" Okay I would never grab someones face and yell at them, but some people do things that just make me think, human nature SUCKS.

     You know what I think bugs me the most about human nature? We all get caught using it sometimes. I would like to be able to say that I don't ever get frustrated, upset, angry, bitter, jealous, or any other negative emotion life can force on someone. But, I do. We all do. I try to avoid these emotions as much as possible, or at least mask them and control the urge to use them in a negative way. And, many times I succeed. But I also fail.

    I think that one thing all of us are guilty of is judging the mirror image we see of people. Think about it... You see someone who is dressed up nice walking to their nice car, what do you think? Probably something along the lines of, "wow they must have their ish figured out, he/she is probably a lawyer, or executive." Then on the flip side you see a family at the grocery store, whose kids all dirty from head to toe and the mothers outfit is warn and her hair is greasy, and I bet you think to yourself, "She needs to take better care of those kids, and herself." These might be two extremes but I use them to try and make a point. We all judge the book by its cover. Whether we verbalize it or not, we do naturally have the tendency to judge each other.

    But what if you could see the whole picture? What if everyone carried their story on a sign? Would we have more compassion? Would we be more understanding? Would we see people the way we see ourselves? What if everyone you met carried their life around there neck? Would you stop to treat them the way you would want to be treated?

     I have stories no one knows about me. And I guarantee that many of you who read this would be in shock if you knew some of them. I think it's fair to say that everyone has some of these... Those trials, pains, burdens that you cart along all by yourself because there's nothing else you can do. So if someone like me has these stories and someone like you has these stories, isn't it safe to say that every human being has one or more of these stories too? So maybe we need to keep that in mind the next time we judge someone.

     The lady you saw at the grocery store today who was holding up the line you were soooooo over being in, what if around her neck hung the words, "sorry for the wait, I have 8 children and no husband and I'm just trying to get the best deals so I can feed my kids today."

     What if the man who took the last seat left on the bus, requiring you to stand jolting back and forth for 30 minutes, held I sign that said, "I just heard the news that my brother died... It's all I can do to hold myself together right now."

     What if that girl at school who you tried to befriend but who pushed you away leaving you to question why she was so rude, was able to tell you "I'm sorry I don't trust you, I don't trust anyone, I've been abused and put on a face that I don't need anyone else because I'm to scared to ask for help."

     What if the boy at the park, who is severely handicapped could tell you, "I haven't always been this way. I used to play football and go on dates; I used to love a normal life; I used to be able to laugh, joke with my friends , and feed myself before the accident. But now I'm trapped in my own body."

     What if that child who cries and coughs all over you as it's bony body is racked in pain wore I shirt that said, "I'm sorry I coughed on you, I never know what will happen next, I used to be healthy, I used to be able to control my health."

     What if the young mother, who cries silently at the park as you pass with you baby in its stroller could open her mind so you could see her very thoughts, "I watch you with your child and long for my own, who died before I could even say hello as I looked in its perfect eyes."

     Would you judge less?

     I would.

     So why don't we stop our judging because people you meet every day have these stories. And we don't need to read a sign to reach our to our brother or sister.... Or do we?

     Human nature: one of our biggest tests. Because if we can overcome the tendency to think of ourselves first, to judge, to hate, to hold a grudge, to push away a family member, to make assumptions, to not let go... We are letting down the God who created us. None of us our perfect, but we can sure as heck do better than we are doing, and I'm talking about myself too.

     So when the sun rises in your life, remember someone somewhere in the world just had the sun set in theirs.

     Smile a little more, be patient, let that car merge over, give someone your place in line, hug your family, play catch with your little boy, give your seat to a stranger, and above all don't judge someone you don't understand.




  1. Beautiful. As much as i know this, i think everyone needs to be reminded and encouraged to live like this on a regular basis.

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