Tuesday, July 13, 2010

That Mountain I thought I climbed was just a Molehill? Well, now, that's humbling.

I think this planet is pretty amazing. For as long as I can remember, this world astounded me. Everything is just too detailed and beautiful to have been some cosmic accident. I adore that even though everything can be so vastly different, it is all connected. There is a balance in nature. There should be a balance in humanity as well, but because we are flawed, often we fall short of this. That doesn't mean we can't try to get along. I think humans can be narrow minded and stubborn. I know I am. I try not to be, but sometimes I am too busy being right that I forget to be a little more open minded. The trouble that I tend to find myself in is that I pride myself in that I am openminded and accepting of others so often that I tend to judge the people around me that I feel is not doing the same thing. If I am so openminded, then I should probably just leave them alone to their opinions and beliefs and accept them too, right? I suppose the real problem here is that I am looking at other people and what their beliefs and standards are. I really should be foccussing on my own life and living up to my own standards. Mother Theresa said it perfectly. "If you judge people, then you have no time to love them." She was pretty wise. She exhibited what so many people who claim to be Christian have yet to even come close: compassion. She was not out to reform people. She was out to love them. She knew what this life was about and lived her life with that mission: to make this world a better place. She served God by serving others. She gave up earthly things and went places that most women would be scared to death to go to. And she made a difference. A huge difference. The Catholics should have canonized her a saint before she even died, but I doubt that would have pleased her. She was not in it for the glory. She was in it for God. Sometimes I wish I could be that openminded. It is hard for me. I am stubborn. I hate being wrong. I hate when I think others are being wrong, when really its just a matter of a difference of opinion. But, sometimes I think this life isn't about the mistakes we make, or who is making them. The real purpose here is to rise above that and learn from those mistakes. The real purpose is to live our lives as Jesus did. And you know what gets me? All those angelic images we see of Jesus in his perfect white and blue robes surrounded by beautiful clean people in pretty gardens. When I think of Jesus, I think he lived his life more like Mother Teresa. He was surrounded by people that most people would have sat back and judged as not socially acceptable. They were "common" and "sinful." Then I think, aren't we all? Jesus even loved those hoity toity Pharisees that were constantly berating him for hanging with tax collectors and harlets. Seriously. He loved them all, and even though they turned their backs on him and played the "holier than thou" card all too often, he still died for their redemption. For my redemption. Now that I think about it, all too often I am sitting there judging people because they are not up to what I think God's standards are, and it hit me... I am more like those Pharisees than those people I am judging. I don't judge those people that most Christians judge. I have a tattoo. I don't have a problem with people who like wine with dinner or the occassional beer. I never really thought of myself as judgemental. In fact, the people I focus my monacle on are those people I used to see as the Pharisees. But, those people I disapprove of are no better or worse off than I am. So, why do I sit here and decide what it is they are doing wrong and what their fate should be. I hate legalism in the church. I hate it. I feel there is no room for legalism in a community that should love. But, by pointing out all those people I deem legalistic, I am judging them. I am placing myself above them. I am becoming the very thing I hate most. Thank goodness there is a God that loves me anyway. Maybe I should stop focussing on everyone else so much and start working on me. How can I make this world better? I can start by accepting those people around me. I can start by accepting that I am not perfect, no one is. Will I ever make as much of a dent in this world as Mother Teresa? Probably not. But even she said that if you cannot find a thousand hungry people, then feed the one you do find.

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