I’ve written before (2/4/11) that we’re diamonds in the rough: hidden potential being honed by finishing touches. Indeed, the real you is partially hidden by rough edges—but also by limited perception of outsiders.
Such near-sightedness can result from a number of factors. To name a few: limited observation (casual contact), inadequate assimilation (people can be thick), and second-hand information (the rumor mill).
Take this blog, for instance: it would be ignorant to think this daily minute is the sum total of my existence. Likewise, it would be ridiculous to size me up based on isolated incidents, assumptions, or reports.
I try my best not to assess people; that’s not my job. Besides: it’s not doing to others what I wouldn’t want done to me.
If I do want to really know how someone ticks, it’s going to take effort; even then, it’s next to impossible. Nobody’s transparent, and we don’t even know our own hearts (1J3:20,Jer17:9). To get down to brass tacks takes giving a rip enough to get off our duff. The shortest distance between two lines is irrelevant to a fat dot, stagnant at one end.
At risk of losing readership, I’ll take a jab at this blog. We do everyone (and ourselves) a disservice by networking via computers. Blogging, Facebook, and Email? Take it all with a grain of salt. It Is What It Is. It’s not your lifeline. We can’t know someone by a single Hello, one email, one evening, or even a weekend. Love takes time. And love makes it personal.
From “You’ve Got Mail”:
Joe Fox: It wasn’t… personal.
Kathleen Kelly: What is that supposed to mean? I am so sick of that. All that means is that it wasn’t personal to you. But it was personal to me. It’s *personal* to a lot of people. And what’s so wrong with being personal, anyway?
Joe Fox: Uh, nothing.
Kathleen Kelly: Whatever else anything is, it ought to begin by being personal.
Whatever our perceptions, let’s keep personal with people. And while we’re at it, let’s “hope all things.” (1Cor13:7) This means to trust in with confident expectation of good, regardless how dark it appears or how much “evidence” is presented; a hope that the situation may be explained and/or repented of, publicly and privately holding out hope until the possibility of that explanation vanishes. And that vanishing point had better be way out there.
Let’s be like Abraham, who went out from his home without a clue, confident it would all work out. Who knows? The blessings may be as numerous as the sand on the seashore.