“If Satan has toeholds that allow him to claw and climb from the underworld to this one, they lie in our failure to see ourselves in others.”
– Lisa Wingate
The beginning of prejudice, hatred and grudges are nothing more than the notion that we are somehow different from one another – and, presumptively, somehow better.
We are no different than the person we cast a evil eye on, of that I am becoming certain. It grieves me that there is more disunity and discord in our “tolerant” world than ever before. And I would dare say, that if our “tolerance” is causing this this present condition, we’d do well to think long and hard if we are actually tolerant at all.
Is tolerance just tolerating the people who look and think and act like we are accustomed to? To contend only with the people who adhere to the beliefs and values that our current society deems acceptable? Tolerance, as defined in the dictionary is “a willingness to endure or tolerate something, in particular the existence of opinions or behaviour that one does not necessarily agree with.” So, in fact, tolerating people of other beliefs or backgrounds when you never disagreed with them in the first place isn’t tolerance at all.
We are similar, you and I.
Though I am a stubborn Canadian woman, who does, in fact, apologize over everything because it is our perception of polite. I’m a homeschooling mother of five kids with fair skin and curly thick hair that isn’t blonde nor brown, but a dull shade in between; a middle class woman, who believes the Christian faith with all my heart. You might be halfway across the world, single, atheist, with smooth dark hair and think such apologies are ridiculous, and abhor the thought of children being taught primarily in their own home.
Our similarities still run deep, I believe this to the core of my being, for I have yet to meet a person who doesn’t long to be accepted, to be loved.
We all are very much the same. We all yearn to have purpose; to make a difference in the world. We all worship, one thing or another. We all get passionate over the causes that move us.
We all make mistakes. We all have fears, regrets and embarrassing moments. We all dream about the future and complain about the weather.
And all of us simply wish to be heard and understood.
What if, we committed to doing this for others? Hearing them? Seeing them? Accepting them for who they are, even if they have no desire at all to change; even going as far as forgiving them for their differences that may offend us?
What if, we saw ourselves in the face of our enemies?
We might just learn to forgive. We might love a little deeper.
We might even change the world.