From my 2013 Journal.
As I passed near the men’s clothing aisle of a new Goodwill store in town, I noticed a large woman, weight mostly distributed around her waist and thighs, holding up an enormous pair of pants that would have fit someone one-and-a-half times her size. “Can you believe this?” she exclaimed. “I’ve never seen pants so big! I’ve never seen anyone who could actually fit these! Wow! These are huge! Look at this!” she reiterated to her shopping companion.
Several thoughts raced through my mind:
- Why did she disbelieve that someone could actually fit them? I’ve seen people this large in person and on TV.
- She, herself, was (ahem) larger than average.
- Why was she making such a big deal about it—loudly—in public?
- Did comparing her large frame with someone larger make her feel better about herself?
- I felt more compassion for the large-pants man and less compassion for the lady. Why?
And then it hit me. I recognize myself in her. I do the same thing (sigh)—I make the biggest fuss about what triggers me the most. When I roll my eyes at someone else’s words or deeds, I recognize some unfinished business in my heart—some lack of compassion, some unresolved hurt, or some judgmentalism. The woman’s words simply revealed what was already in her heart. I don’t judge this woman—because I am too much like her. Perhaps I need to practice more grace . . . toward myself!
For out of the overflow of his heart he [a person] speaks. Matt. 7:15-23; Luke 6:43-45