Constant criticizers make my eyes water. Overly-sensitive, insecure backbiters make my stomach turn. Liars make my ears bleed. Manipulators make my blood boil. Fakers make my head hurt. My eyes, stomach, ears, blood and head are all physically affected by the aforementioned persons. However, my heart is steadfast in love for them. How can that be?
It has not always been easy for me to love the people around me who were….shall we say…tough to love. Let’s say that I was a very logical, methodical, strategic-thinking, rather intolerant Pollyanna. My rose colored glasses were not for blindness – I could see reality very well; almost too well. My vision was to see something better for those I encountered.
I Am an Empath
I was born with a very unique gift – the ability to sense and perceive the emotions of others. It’s like the gift of discernment on steroids. It might sound pretty cool but it has taken me nearly half a century to manage it in a way that is both beneficial and healthy for me. I embraced it as a child, rejected it as a young adult and ignored it for about 10 years. Three years ago I hit a wall and I could not ignore it any more. It was time. I began to vigorously examine my purpose for living. I retraced my life putting together puzzle pieces of experiences and emotions and took a hard honest look at who I really am.
I am Love
The further I got on my journey to purpose the greater the challenges laid before me. The more I become my purpose of “LOVE” the more intolerable my list of peeves grew. It became difficult for me to ignore snide remarks about friends or backhanded compliments thrown my way. It was nearly impossible for me to ignore the emotional limps of those who pretended to run confidence marathons. Suddenly it was as if I had X-ray vision into the emotional identity of everyone around me. My gift was stronger than it had ever been. It was, without a doubt…spooky. Not only was it spooky but it was not working for me at all. Little by little it sapped my energy. God was showing me so much and I was grateful but not ready for the responsibility. Finally one day – at a point of utter exhaustion from carrying such a heavy burden I asked, “What am I supposed to do with all of this?”
I Went to Nineveh
I wish I could say that I got an immediate answer, jumped out of bed, and started on my way to purposeful living. Nope! I was like Jonah. God told Jonah to “…go [to Nineveh] and tell them to stop doing such evil things.” -Jonah 1: 2 Jonah did not want to go to Nineveh. So he went to Joppa and set sail to Tarshish. Now we all know how that ended up. Even if you haven’t been to Sunday school in 30 years, we all know that Jonah found himself in the belly of the whale. Once the big fish spit him out, guess where he went? Yep, Nineveh!
“Nineveh” was not someplace I wanted to go but after being tossed on the sea, nearly drowning, and spit out of the whale, I too went to Nineveh. My Nineveh was a land of people filled with self-hate, distanced from God and consequently full of ill-will for everyone around them. I went to my Nineveh with my rose colored glasses and believed that God could make change through me. After all, why else was I born with these glasses?
I Bought New Glasses
So, as you may recall, some weeks ago I died. That was the day when I bought a house, a car and got a job in Nineveh. I am no longer just visiting. To help accommodate my stay I bought some new rose colored glasses. My new rose colored glasses are mirrored. The mirrored glasses help people see themselves in a better light. They do not just benefit me.
I understand that hurting people hurt other people. I also understand that nobody desires to be miserable. I know that liars lie because they are afraid of truth’s consequence. Manipulators try to manipulate everything because they don’t trust God. And so on…
You see, my rose colored glasses have always helped me to see why people act the way they do. My new mirrored rose colored glasses help people see the emotional limps and confidence crutches with them as they walk this journey. My my new glasses now allow people to see themselves in a different way. People sometimes see themselves in view of their circumstance or what someone else has told them. They carry insecurities about wealth, education, physical characteristics or ability. By offering love to hurting people we help them see just how lovable they really are. I am a very logical, methodical, strategic-thinking, more tolerant Pollyanna. I’m sharing my rose colored glasses with the world – the people of my Nineveh.
It’s not easy to love those who can be difficult to love. God loves and a values every one of us and we need his help to love and value those around us. The more we love God, our creator, we learn to love His creation. Us! Go buy a pair of rose colored glasses and see how much better the days go.
The Benefit of Rose Colored Glasses
1. Accept people for who they are
2. Accept that people are hurting and broken
3. Know that people are afraid to be truthful
4. Know that people want to love someone
5. Know that people want to BE LOVED