Tuesday, September 5, 2017
My Vision has Improved
When I was in my twenties, I looked at life and the people around me with a very limited lens. My lifeview had not been shaped with a lot of reality or life.
I never realized how little I knew about the people around me. How their experiences had affected them. What they were dealing with. How their relationship with Christ had gotten to the point it had (for better or worse).
I liked my world. My little bubble. I saw a filtered surface and never bothered to dig past that.
But then I started opening my eyes. At times, my eyes were pried open and drained of all the tears blocking my vision so I could see the hurt in this world.
My Grandma was always a person I revered. I still do. But through the years, my rose-colored glasses fell off as I looked at her and realized: she is a woman; she is flawed; she sins. She also prays for every single one of her children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren all the time. She reads her Bible daily. She hosted and conducted Bible studies. She is a woman pastors have gone to for advice. She is a godly woman. But she's also a woman. A woman who has experienced life. She knows the ups and downs of this life and come out with God as foremost. But it was a strange reality when "Grandma" was more than just Grandma. She was her own person and I finally saw her as just that.
Another relative became a person to me when I found out he emotionally abused his wife for years. I never knew his wife had put up with life as an abused spouse. I never understood the extent of the damage done to her.
All of my life before my thirties, I looked at life and the people around me with a very limited lens. I never realized how little I knew about the people around me. How their experiences had changed them. What they were dealing with. How their relationship with Christ had gotten to the point it had (for better or worse).
I saw friends go through divorce. I saw marriages endure and push past affairs. I saw single friends struggle with being single. I saw that every marriage has its challenges and that you really never know what happens (or doesn't) behind closed doors. I saw the importance in finding a church to call home and really immerse yourself in it. I saw my husband in a different light. He was a human, he was flawed just like me. I saw the plight of pastor's wives everywhere to deal with a husband who is emotionally, spiritually, and physically on call at all times. I saw women in a different light. I saw the hurt behind so many eyes, the struggle of living imperfectly in our "perfect" society, the anger at how women are portrayed, the insecurity behind scantily clad women. I saw it.
I saw. I saw life. I realized it's not cut and dry. We are evolving and our thoughts and vision change as we experience life. I also saw my own life radically change. I never knew my world as I knew it could be so shaken.
I also saw Jesus in a completely different light. At one time, I sought out the advice of a trusted friend who ended up counseling and guiding me through my thoughts and feelings on my new journey. She spoke truth, we prayed... we have remained open and honest in our friendship about our struggles. I began to often go to my secret alone spot and sit there praying and reading the Bible.
I had dealt with my first real tragedy. I was so hurt and confused, but I was at peace. I turned to comfort through Jesus (and chocolate to be honest). I'm not sure you ever really know how you will react to hardships, and I am sure I have more coming. It was my first victory in my real fight against the world though and I was relieved looking back what occurred, for little did I know I was establishing a pattern in my life of Who to turn to when tragedies strike.
But those tragedies would not be my last....