Lately I find myself learning a lot. Honestly that should be the norm with all of us, because if we’re not learning, we’re not growing, a truth we forget at times. I think what I am going through now is another phase maturing. Although it truly pains me to say it, I am getting older. No, i did not say I’m old, just getting older (i must qualify that for my own psyche).
What i’ve been learning lately is there’s always a story. Whenever we encounter someone who is hard to deal with, an out of control child, a person who seems to be dependent on another person, a person who regularly irritates others, someone who seems to always be in trouble, or even a family member who drives us crazy with their immaturity. Maybe even a person who writes huge run on sentences like the one you just read.
Whatever the case there is always a story. I think we should be aware of the story. We need the background before we can truly relate to someone. Now, I say this not to excuse wrong behavior. Not at all, but I say this for perspectives sake. We to quickly judge without knowing the situation. We rush to form an opinion without thinking it through. Maybe its because or society has become so politicized that we can’t think of peoples personal lives, but rather, where they fit on the continuum of our political spectrum and agenda.
lets not forget every person has their own story. If we know the story, then we can have the right perspective to relate to them and maybe even help. In ministry of course we’ve worked with all ages, all races, both genders, and even some confused about their gender, or their sexuality, the very poor and the very rich, and everyone in between.
When we see certain things, many times it speeds us to judgement, to opinion, to criticize, but how can we help if we don’t understand. I want to encourage you before you judge develop a relationship and hear the story, because if you do, you won’t end up judging at all, you will end up caring, being compassionate, and helping that person. You will realize they are not just the other side of a political agenda, or a moral standard, they are a person whose gone through some stuff.
I can’t begin to share all the stories. When working with foster kids and at times getting frustrated with behavior and then you hear the story, your frustration subsides and an overwhelming compassion and compulsion rises in you and says, “I will help this child!”
In working with people who seem to never be able to get over problems or obstacles, or addictions, you want to judge or be tired of it, but then you hear the story, and you realize my opinion matters little, but my love and action can make a change.
So, today, before we form our opinions of others, before we generalize and put everyone in the same box. Before we decide we know more than we really do, I implore you, listen to the story. You’re perspective will shift, and action will follow.
Am i say its ok to continue down a wrong road, or that people should be excused for wrong behavior because of their story? NO
But I’m also saying they can’t be helped effectively unless someone is willing to hear their story.
So what’s your story?