Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Battling the stupid blues

Random fact of the day: Uhhhh... I got nothing random today. Except for silly things like how I know when it's time to trim my nails, how often I check my mailbox at home and what I'm thinking about for dinner. Basically, I am a Grown-Up now and it is dull sometimes.

Hearing aids: I struggle with feeling stupid (at worst) and inadequate (at best). If I could be perfectly honest with you, and I mean this in the most not-vain way possible - I think I'm a lot smarter than people give me credit for. But because I often don't take opportunities to speak up or people don't give me such opportunities, whichever, I feel like I come across as something less than I am.

When I'm constantly having to ask for repetition, I feel like I look ignorant. If I answer a question that I heard but not one that someone asked, I look like I don't know what I'm talking about. If I stay silent during lunchtime chatter or serious discussions, I appear dim. At least that's what it feels like. But people, I'm so freaking aware. If only you knew how much I use my eyes to make up for my ears. I wonder how many discussions of "Where did ____ go?" or "Did we pass that store?" could have been resolved if someone had asked me - while you were talking to each other, I was taking in all the sights and noting all the details.

It's important to me to know. To be aware of what's going on around me, so I am always looking around, always trying to figure things out. And then, because I spend so much time in my own little world, I think things through a lot. Sometimes this is dangerous and I end up over-thinking things and make mountains out of molehills. Sometimes this is good, as I end up exploring every possible angle to something. My point is just that I know things. I'm not dumb. Just because I don't speak up doesn't mean I have nothing to offer. I have so much to share if I just knew the question, knew what someone needed. I may be a little blonde, but I'm not that blonde. ;)

In other news: Census? Check. Taxes? In progress. Adulthood? Boring.

(Before I jump into this very random thought, please note that I am reflecting on our sin nature, not reflecting on who we are when we're new in Christ. I'm reflecting on the type of people we are when no one is looking)

Do you ever get mad on someone's behalf? Like if someone wrongs your friend, you get mad at whoever did the wrong-ing? Or maybe you get mad at God when your loved one suffers? Are you madder than if it was you in the same position? Do you get more upset when something bad happens to someone you love than if that same something bad had happened to you?

Sometimes I do. I wonder why we get upset on someone's behalf. I suppose the sweet and romantic answer is that we love the person in question so much that we hate to see them suffer. But I have a hard time believing that. I mean, I'm sure it's true sometimes but let's be honest here. We're sinners, you and I. It's in our nature to fend only for ourselves and even those of us who are in Christ battle this nature constantly. There's nothing in our sin nature that should cause us to care more if someone we love is hurt than if we ourselves are. Our nature dictates that we should be angrier when we are wounded than if someone else is.

No, I think when we get upset at someone's misfortune, we're really upset that life is suddenly not about us. We have to consider someone else other than our selves and that is contrary to our nature. So we try to "fix" it quickly - by throwing out platitudes and well meanings and warm wishes and therapists and hot showers and retail therapy and drugs and doctors. We want to fix it because the sooner their pain is over, the sooner we can get back to more important matters, namely ourselves. (That's not to say that there's absolutely no part of us that cares about other people. We are made in God's image, after all, and so even when we don't know Jesus, I think that there is something in each of us that does recognize that our self is so little and Someone else is so big and better. But at our sinful cores, we really only want ourselves.)

But really, all we can do is recognize our hurting friends/family are broken just like us and pray for the grace to not enter their pain or frustration without the name of Jesus on our lips and in our prayers.

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