Thursday, September 22, 2011
As I age, I become more and more simple in many areas. It seems to me that I’m growing in the directions that I want to grow in many different parts of my personality. But as I grow, I also realize that there are so many ways that I am a complicated person. I try to keep it in check, but sometimes I not only complicate simple things for myself, I also complicate simple things for those I love the most and occasionally I complicate simple things for people I hardly know. As I watch other women around me I realize that many of them are complicated too, and I’m convinced that those who seem simple just haven’t been watched long enough. I work with lots of women: teachers, moms and teenage girls. It appears to me that we all seem to have our moments when simple things are not simple, and when small things are not small. Of course things have happened recently to make me look at this, but the tiny things that I made big are less important than what I see about myself as a result. I’ve come to the conclusion that the way I respond to everything that goes on in my world is a made up of a very complex set of circumstances that lives inside of me. These circumstances change from moment to moment, from day to day and from week to week. Unfortunately for those people that I spend a lot of time with, it means that the response they get on any given day could vary widely from what they would normally expect, and a person that is generally easy to hang out with (me) can become high maintenance at least for a period of time. Something that is small may be big, and something that is simple, may become very UNsimple. My responses to my world are made from a complicated (and sometimes very messy) mix of emotions that are built by past hurts, past injustices, past relationships, my upbringing, my second grade teacher’s personality, what I had for breakfast, how much sleep I got last night, my current stress level, my hormonal status, and the phase of the moon-not to mention the fact that in being a woman it is almost required that I feel and am affected by almost every emotion of my children, my husband and practically everyone in the room with me at the moment. Combine these things with my own sin nature and the fact that I have an enemy constantly attacking me and I have a mess just waiting to happen.
I’ve learned 3 very important things from this realization. Number one: I should always show grace to people when they respond in a way that is uncharacteristic-soon I will need that grace. Number two: I am so thankful that I am surrounded by people who love me anyway-people who just accept me for who I am, and really don’t worry too much about my bad days. They are a gift from God. Number 3: While I will never excuse the times I when I damage relationships with the people I love by complicating simple things, I should consider showing myself the same grace and acceptance I would give my dearest friends. I am convinced that it is a sign of a having a mature walk with Christ, since ultimately that grace is what He died for.