April 02, 2013
Care, ME Newsletter, Vol. 6, Issue 14
Just as I am getting back into my post-surgery life, making decisions based on age and supposed maturity, the same old sticky cog throws the wagon into a tight spin. Dizziness ensues as I try to differentiate mature acceptance from post-adolescent apathy. I’m not apathetic. Of course I care. Obviously I care, or I wouldn’t be so beside-myself upset. I just don’t … care.
I don’t care in measurements: Is it too much of an effort? To get upset?
Yeah, that’s too much effort. To fight back? Yeah. Too much effort.
I take a few necessary clarifying and oxygen restocking breaths and sit way back before I file what will undoubtably be unpleasant unopened emails into my “I’m Never Going to Open This” mailbox folder. The only way to control reaction is to eliminate the barb. Yanking it out is the only way, still that leaves a bloody mess and more heart scars.
I was just coming down from an idiot-induced house-cleaning rampage, wearing workout yoga pants, because I figured wearing them would allow me to count chores as exercise, when I came across a forgotten repackaged-for-freshness baggie of Zingermans Raspberry Marshmallow Bunnytails. I popped one in my mouth, moisturized my unhappy hands, and decided to peruse Facebook just to see if anyone else was having as fantastic a day and night as I’ve had. You know, misery loves company and all that malarky. My misery doesn’t love company. My misery has established that inviting difficult persons into my life in order to win them over is a ridiculous way to live. The familiar family motto “keep your friends close, and your enemies closer,” requires energy expenditure.
Is that too much effort? Yeah, it is. I see no reason to keep strife causers close to my heart or even within hug range. Periferal distance is fine.
Another troublesome tole, touted by many, but not entirely understood grows from Mark 12:28-31
28 One of the teachers of the law came and heard them debating. Noticing that Jesus had given them a good answer, he asked him, “Of all the commandments, which is the most important?”
29 “The most important one,” answered Jesus, “is this: ‘Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one.’
30 Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.’
31 The second is this: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no commandment greater than these.”
Surface simplicity backfires. We tend to pull this phrase out defensively, erroneously using it as a situational rebuttal and warning. It finds itself lumped in with another hastily thrown defense: ‘Do Unto Others as You would have them Do Unto You.’ We twist it to our advantage – justifying treating others as they have treated us.
The real problem is this: Loving our neighbors as ourselves requires loving ourselves!
We tend to treat others the way we treat ourselves. Who among us really loves themselves?
Who has never had a single “I wish I hadn’t done that,” or “I wish I hadn’t said that,” or “I wish I hadn’t wore that/eaten that/written that,” or other serious non-self-forgiving moment?
If we are to love ourselves as GOD love us; if we are to forgive ourselves as GOD has forgiven us, we could master unusual peace, replacing it with every day peace… and eliminating rage induced house-cleaning altogether.
Posted by jaselin at April 2, 2013 02:03 PM