“The first time people show you who they are, believe them.” Wisdom born from experience from Maya Angelou that resonates with our own.
This is a phrase I have heard a lot lately. Perhaps it stems from the current climate of “fake news” and the search for what is true and real. We have a lot of information coming at us all day, all the time. We need, at heart, to know who to trust for ourselves and for others.
I have always gone with my gut, being an intuitive kind of person. I tend to give the benefit of the doubt, go the extra mile, do the Christian thing when dealing with people, even if my first impression has been a little mixed. We all get a little star-crossed at times, wanting to see the good in relationships -especially blooming romances. Alas, time has a way of revealing what is beneath the surface and we sometimes find our true love is actually a toad, not a prince/princess or that a friend we have trusted doesn’t have our best interests at heart. Those situations bring lessons and help us in our quest to find those whom we can trust.
Sometimes it is easier to see the red flags in someone else’s life. As a mom, I saw the “Eddie Haskells” in my sons circle of friends. I saw them like they were coated in neon paint. I learned along the way that they had to learn for themselves the cost of poor decisions even after I warned them to be careful. We meet with our friends and our Dear Abby gets tagged. So much easier to see things transpiring elsewhere.
There are times in our lives when it is important to do a little stocktaking, an inventory of our journey. Are we happy? Are we doing what we love? Is someone blocking us? Are we being true to ourselves? What needs to happen for us to move forward?
As we focus on the people in our lives, there are questions to consider as well. Are we getting the support we need? Are we free to be who we are? Are we feeling loved and appreciated? Are we feeling resentful or trapped? Are there feelings that need to be aired? Do we need to let go of those people who are toxic or negative?
How do we live out Jesus’ commandment to love one another? How do we protect ourselves from those who would take advantage of our good nature? How do we find our own truth and our direction forward on the path?
Rule #1. You deserve respect.
Rule #2 You are not a doormat or someone’s venting post.
Rule #3 Your experiences and opinions are valid.
Rule #4 If your first impression is not favorable, listen to your early warning system.
Rule #5 Talk to a trusted friend if you are feeling unsafe in any situation.
Rule #6 If something seems to good to be true, it probably is.
Well, that was very interesting. To be honest, this isn’t where this blog was going in my mind when I began. I offer it with love and hope the message is helpful.
Now, off to finish the notes for tonight’s class.