There is a poem that is said to have been found written on the wall of Mother Teresa’s home for children in Calcutta, India. You can read it in full here.
The poem talks about people often being unreasonable, irrational, self-centred, unfaithful, accusing, dishonest, jealous, quick to forget and so on…The magic of the poem is the beautiful contrasting attributes for one to live by regardless of others, because as it asserts, life is not about oneself compared to others, for we have a higher accountability.
Living differently can carry a cost of simply not fitting into the regular life-sized box…but that’s okay.
I love this poem as I feel it parallels how I want to live my life these days.
Now nearing the age of 40 I find myself wanting to leave behind the immature games people play in their relationships with others.
Yes, I must be honest and admit that I am not perfect and can get sucked into uneasy situations if I am not careful…But the more I let go of the mentality of trying to please everyone and trying to second guess others and replace it more and more with just “loving them anyway” the more free I find myself.
I am not saying I am being unwise, allowing myself to cop abuse off people continually…What I am saying is that I can simply ‘love’ people by treating others the way I would like to be treated. I know it’s not rocket science and is what Jesus said for us to do…but it can be easier said than done!
For me treating others the way I want to be treated is lived out by placing my confidence in Jesus and choosing to not take offense as often as possible. I choose to be my happy self, regardless of others and people can accept me or not. I will interact with people I encounter with sincere integrity; but choose my close friends wisely and set boundaries with others for the protection of us both and not feel guilty about it. I am choosing to be me consistently and refusing to play immature games…even if it would win me more friends!
Living differently can carry a cost of simply not fitting into the regular life-sized box…but again that’s okay.
The wonderful thing is I am finding the more I choose to just love people I interact with, as simply me, the more Jesus can be freely present too.
I have discovered I am able to set the tone for many of my encounters these days and of how freeing it is to not worry about what everyone thinks, or of feeling responsible for their sometimes bad choices.
My 20th year school graduation anniversary dinner is approaching soon and I found myself thinking, “Do I really want to go and have to endure some of those looks?” The schoolgirl mentality was creeping back…
But then I remembered the freeing truth of being mature and of just ‘loving them anyway…’ because the poem is right at the end of the day I am accountable to Him who desires us to abundantly love others as He so graciously does.
There is no freedom being bound by the limiting restrictions of worrying about what everyone else thinks about us ~ There is freedom in living our life for Christ who never puts us down ~ There is freedom in loving others because we experienced His love first…I am free to become all that He has planned for me, and so I choose to continue embracing Him with all that I am each day, as I await His return.
Living differently can carry a cost of simply not fitting into the regular life-sized box…but again that’s okay…for I have found the truth that my worth is defined by Christ alone…it is His opinion alone that matters! What a precious truth to discover even if it does have a cost at times of simply being different.
So my encouragement to you today is to simply join me in bursting out of the life-sized box by “loving them anyway”, Melanie.