Recently I had one of those moments where I became overwhelmed with love of people.
I struggle sometimes with over-thinking how my world should be, look, and function. There are so many things I wish I had better, so many things I want to care about more.
But then I remember perfection is a lie, and balance is a rip off.
Last week while visiting a church, I starred at the stage as a young man serving in the Marines came forward with his mom. The story they shared was bare bones and lovely. After living across the country for 10 months he surprised his mom by coming home. It was the mom that took my breath away and made it difficult to hold back tears.
She was too busy loving her son without risking a wasted moment. The joy and relief that was upon her face was beautiful. It reminded me to embrace each moment for what it's worth. It reminded me of my brother serving over seas in Afghanistan. And even though he is in a "safe" zone he is still in a dangerous place. The more this young man spoke, the more I listened. The more I listened, the more I felt. So what do I do with these feelings?
While visiting San Francisco, I came across an area that I guess some would consider "the hood." Yes it was scary, yes it was sketchy, nor any place I'd want to be near. I wanted to look away, hide, and act like I never drove by it. I wanted to pretend that life is and was the way it was when I was seven. My childhood was a dream any child would want to have. It shaped me. And I will always be thankful for it.
I'd rather forget about the dead streets covered by canopies and oppression. I'd like to never know what it looked like in the first place.
But I'm learning.
I'm learning to see beauty in the eyes of people around me. I'm forcing myself to love faults in others, not because it's natural, or because I want to, but because I suppose its the only way I'll realize we are all walking around wounded.
I am called to love broken people. I am called to love mean people, angry people, selfish people, bitter people, poor people, because that's what Jesus did and still does. It's rough, it rugged, and I've gotta be honest some days it's outright brutal to do.
But today I am watching for ways I have the opportunity to love. Love them for where they're at. I am slowing down to listen, notice, and feel.