Ok ... So, I have really been thinking about this whole topic lately. LABELS.
The concept of "labels". Why is it that it is so easy to "label" people and the expectations or the lack thereof they as individuals will or will not fulfill in our life. Our humanity and survival instincts seem to easily box or stereotype the mix of our day to day relationships so quickly and so conveniently. I can so easily assess, rub shoulders with an individual and quickly figure out where this person will fit into my world (that is if they make "the cut") based on looks, interests and personality. Does this person "fit" what I deem as a current need or desire in my life -now? Funny, how we perhaps don't particularly assimilate thought this way in approaching individuals and yet if one was to analyze it even just a little bit - isn't this what we do every day by our actions or expressions in one way or another with each other? Whether it is the grocery clerk, the homeless person on the street, an old friend or new acquaintance. Labels. Boxes. Stereotypes.
I have been thinking how I can so easily miss the richness of the gift of a conversation or a life so far beyond even my expectation of the moment or perceived "take away".
I so want to walk into each conversation not assuming the ending or the conclusion of a conversation but, take in the whole narrative and all the little bits in between. I want to reach for "the mystery" and the gifts that emerge out of a new encounter and in an old relationship. I want to hear the musings and uncover a new dynamic of a stirring soul.
In many ways I feel like I am on the receiving end of labels which deem me capable or incapable of regard, intimacy, relationship, desire, longing and honesty. It is angered me as of late cause often it feels like it borders on an injustice of it's own accord. Though I have to say ...my current thought through this process is tho' I cannot change another human thought or opinion towards me. I can change my heart to how I respond to others and so this is therefore my heart response in the midst of this current frustration.
I had a new friend call me out of the blue a couple weeks ago -just to talk. He didn't want anything in particular. He wasn't looking for some insight, answer or resolve. He just wanted to talk. It caught me off-guard cause I remember getting off the phone and asking myself mmm...I wonder what so and so wanted? and then i realized that he gave me a gift in that moment of conversation. A gift that I feel is so rare in my life. He just wanted to talk, have a laugh, shoot the breeze, catch up and perhaps in those moments of innocence, a deeper-far more rarer gift would be found. I know that I found a gift. I found it in his phone call that day and it poured over my soul in such a rich way.
The longing "to know" and then in turn to truly "be known" - it is in all of us. There is a treasure in your soul that is waiting to be unlocked and given away, just as it is in each one who we meet. Sometimes it is awkward, perhaps a little uncomfortable but, as I look over my life I see that if I am willing to search for that which is so rare in the life of one who is in front of me a whole new world is opened up that is beautiful and unique. Funny how many times the very "thing" that has connected us together is not even the gift that the Lord wants to give us in the midst of the connect. It is so much deeper - far more rare - definately at times difficult to find but, if we can push to the core of the soul and that which stirs the deep places there is a piece that will awaken, bring life, refresh, push us past our selfish motives and agendas. We will come alive in and through relationship in depth and meaning. Perhaps being able to give and receive love in a way that is more pure and available. Perhaps being the face, hands and voice of understanding, life and love. At least I can honestly say, I really hope so. I want the labels gone, the boxes shattered. This is my prayer right now... To uncover the mystery's of a human soul and to be uncovered in all it's complexities and mystery.