There is a tendency in us to shy away from certain people. Something in our minds says No. We push them away.
Often they’re the kind ones, the beautiful souls.
I’m not talking about what your gut says, because your gut is usually right. I’m talking about what your head says. We see, too often, with our face-eyes, and not with our hearts. We judge, and we select. We say, Good to this, and Bad to that. We embrace some, and we resist others. We are obsessed with what we think is pretty.
But looking in someone’s eyes will show you the key to their hearts. That’s where the truth lies. That’s where, if beauty exists, you’ll see clearly.
I had a yoga teacher who told us students, all the time, Get comfortable with being uncomfortable.
This is the lesson we must take through our lives.
Most things in this life are uncomfortable. New situations, new people. Discomfort is often just fear. And oftentimes, we are afraid of what’s kind and gentle, because at root, we think we don’t deserve it. We think we’re not worthy.
You deserve it, baby. You deserve all of it.
Jesus was a master at looking with the heart. He looked at all the ugly people, the sick, the wounded. He never shied away, never turned anyone away from his love. And he touched the beaten-down of this world, loved them, healed them, made them see what was inside of them, made them rise up to glory.
Sometimes, at the outset of a new encounter, we don’t have the tools to know who someone is. We’ve been using the eyes in our heads, and not the eyes in our hearts. We listen to our minds rather than what our heart and our gut tells us. We haven’t been trained correctly. We think our thoughts are going to lead us to truth. (Oh, dear Lord, save us from that!) Plus, we’ve been hurt before, battered and bruised. People have let us down. We thought someone was something, and it turns out they were something else. They did something that wounded us.
Do not let your wounds rule over your whole life. Your whole life is yours. It is okay to have wounds. We all have them. They make us human. My Lord leaked blood, was cut open, was nailed to a cross. Wounds are not a problem.
It is whether you choose to live beyond them.
I have often been, in my life, obsessed with looks, with external appearances. A few weeks ago, I went to a Christian mystical retreat that was definitely out of my comfort zone. I sat down and felt very, very uncomfortable. The people there did not look like me. Many of them had silver hair and wore different kinds of clothes. They were older. There was no lip gloss happening, there was no sexual attraction emanating around the room. I kept thinking What the hell am I doing here?
But I stayed open, and ended up being so moved by my five days that it changed my life. Everyone was enlivened, everyone was beautiful. I no longer saw the stupid surfaces of skin and hair and clothes. I saw the beauty of seeking, hungering, gentle souls. And I loved them all.
God bless the pretty people, and God bless the ugly, too.
God bless the whole fucking world.
Categories: spirituality and faith