Tuesday, May 06, 2008


I can remember when I was young I thought that when I became an adult I would know things. I didn't know how. I never really thought about how. Just that somehow when I reached adulthood that many of life's mysteries would somehow magically be revealed to me.


When that didn't happen, I set out to find answers. And when I'd formulated opinions I was ridiculous about defending them. I wasn't very tolerant of those that didn't share my belief's. Because, after all, I was now "grown up" and I was right. Right?

And then I came to a point in my life, not too awful many years ago, where I started to realize that I didn't have the inside scoop on all important things in my own life, much less on anyone else's life. That was a humbling time.

And through the years since that time, I've come to realize how very little I know. That the old saying about walking a mile in another's shoes before you judge has tremendous merit.

So now I try, and often fail, to love my neighbor as myself. No matter what their choices. I try to avoid being judgemental. I often fail at this too. I believe that loving our neighbor is one of the most important things we can learn here on earth. We're commanded to do it after all.

A lady recently approached me talking about various things in her life. Hardships. I was startled because I didn't know the woman at all. She certainly didn't fit into the surroundings. I stopped and listened to her, but my body language was terrible (I thought about it after the fact). She obviously had problems other than the ones she was talking about. And she picked me to share with. And I know that I wasn't nearly as embracing as I should have been. It was a safe area. My husband was close. There was no need to fear her. And yet I did. Because she was so different. And came at me so suddenly.

I talked to my husband on the way home about how Jesus would have acted with this woman. And I felt shame. While I was sweet to her, I certainly didn't do all that I could have done to touch her life.

These are the area's that I am trying to work on in my life. Loving my neighbor, especially the less-loveable ones.

And living in the past. But I'll save that for another day.

As a funny aside, when I started typing this post, I had every intention of talking about food and our dietary changes lately. And why I've not done a Menu Plan Monday. And the fact that we're having out of town company tomorrow for several days and how to feed them when we're eating so differently. That's why I called it "nourishment". I had absolutely no intention of speaking about these things that have been on my heart. But it's what I typed for some reason.

But there are other kinds of nourishment. So I think I'll keep the title.


Anonymous said...

Amen Michelle!
It's easy to remember to love others sometimes, when we are so focused on ourselves. I don't know a single one of us human beings who haven't done it at some point or another.
I think it is important to be firm in our convictions, but it never has to be done in mean-ness.
I have a hard time in not necessarily being rude, but like you in the situation you mentioned, being relateable to others. I will pray for you as I pray for myself in this area! :)
God's blessings.

My name is Michelle. said...

Thank you Mrs. Gunning. :) And I agree about being firm in convictions. I just happened to have a general "know it all" attitude when I was very young (early 20's). Not in a mean way. But in an "I've got life figured out" way. Sorta smug I suppose.

I just pray now to shine Christ's light in whatever situation I'm in. And not just a little bit of light, but His brilliant light.

BarbaraLee said...

I have the same problem. But we have a nieghbor that is hard to get along with. What makes the matters worst is there is a lawsuit over property going on between us. We live in the country and other nieghbors are really fed up w/him. They are all hoping he looses his place. Now w/everything going on between us do you know how hard it is to be nice about this one trouble maker nieghbor when the other nieghbors bad mouth him? We just o well it off but when me & hubby talk at home it is even harder. Sometimes trying to understand him doesn't make sense. I just keep telling my hubby it takes all kinds and God is teaching us how to get along. I try praying for him.

My name is Michelle. said...

Barbaralee, this is exactly the kind of things I'm working through. Knowing that we are to love our enemy. Knowing that we are to forgive. And to pray. It's really an area of struggle to me as well. My husband and I talk about it often.

I just try to keep in mind how Jesus would act with these people. But my flesh screams against it.

Thank you for coming here and commenting. :)