Sunday, October 6, 2019

Perceptions and Opinions

     To be out and about in the public eye these days is certainly an eye opener.  So many people have such odd perspectives of what is going on around them.  I think one must realize that in itself is the key.  Our perspective is what makes the difference in not only our day to day lives but in our long term life style as well.  Let me see if I can explain what I mean.
     If you view the world as a hostile place just brimming with people whose only goal in life is to be mean to other people, that is exactly what you are going to find in life around you.  Our perception is guided by our expectations.  Here's another and simpler example.  Did you realize how many people drive cars just like yours before you got that car?  Or if you have decided to buy a car and you want a green one, have mercy you are seeing a lot of green cars on the road these days aren’t you?
     I had a fellow tell me a while back he missed the days when we could share ideas with each other and still be friends even though we had differences of opinion.  I sat down with him and mostly just playing the devil's advocate, I disagreed with almost everything he said.  We laughed and joked for an hour and even now I can't tell you one thing we agreed upon.  After a while, I brought this to his attention.  At first he was shocked and then he just broke out in uncontrolled laughter.  With his eyes filled with the tears of laughter he said I had played him for a sucker.  After some more conversation he realized the truth of the matter and how much we had in common after all.  He also realized he had somehow been virtually programmed by not only the people around him but also by the media.  He expected people to violently disagree and that is what he usually found.  His change of perception made all the difference in the world and he started making friends of people with whom he never dreamed he could be friends.
     When God tells us to love one another, He does not mean only if they agree with you.  Unfortunately He also did not mean they are going to love you back.  It is not up to us individually to change someone else’s opinions in order to make them love us.  Actually it is quite the contrary.  If you allow for and respect differing opinions you will come much closer to securing that mutual relationship and as I often jokingly say, “You can’t really go wrong if you just let them believe what they want to believe even if they are wrong”. 

God is good all the time.