“Good things inside.” I read this short marketing phrase on a little paper bag that has sat on my chest of drawers for about a month. The bag is to excite the buyer in opening up their purchase from The Body Shop. But it provided new meaning in me as it confirmed a revelation revealed shortly prior to noticing its significance. Here’s a little background info.
I have always prided myself on being able to work with anybody. I’ve always felt that I have the type of mild-mannered, chill attitude blended with the right amount of peace and calmness that can handle any type of personality. Boy was I wrong! I encountered a person that pushed me so far over the edge that I dreaded their presence. It didn’t help that I saw this person daily. Never had I experienced a person that I didn’t have years of love and care connected to, who pushed my buttons just the right way. Never had I been forced to pray about a person and a matter with such intensity without it being connected to health or well-being.
I allowed one individual to take me completely out of myself, removing the unconditional love God instilled in me to pour onto others. I allowed a person to cause me to say words with hurtful intent. I allowed a person to make my soul cringe and my skin crawl.
My church small group met tonight and I almost didn’t go because I was tired and left work late. But God used another group member to lead me there, late but just in time to be connected to the source that would later provide the revelation necessary to re-establish love in my heart. I spoke about the humbling season I’ve been in, not knowing that later I would be so blessed by having a car that I was able to take three of my group members to their destination after the meeting. This reminder of love is likely what awakened me to this scripture:
Do not forget to show hospitality to strangers, for by so doing some people have shown hospitality to angels without knowing it. -Hebrews 13:2
Any person that I meet could very well be an angel assessing my character; determining if I am in fact ready for the purpose of interacting with people who stem from varying backgrounds, contrasting personalities, and unsightly behavior. Am I going to retaliate, determined to speak my piece? Or am I going to love..in spite of? I am going to believe that there are “good things inside” this individual despite of the ugly that my flesh sees.
While I’m over here tripping over someone’s behavior, I could be winning people over with mine. My genuine love of Jesus should be infectious and make others desire the same type of relationship with Him. Who knows, I may be the only symbolization of Jesus they see here on earth.
Pray for me because I know that with this revelation comes new challenges tomorrow. But I cannot return to my former state of animosity, retaliation, and even hatred by ignoring the blatant message God has provided. Instead, let’s choose to love the most unloveable. Let’s choose peace in the most uncomfortable, disturbing situations. Let’s be the light in dark places.