I don’t like people.
The nostalgic weekend has given way to hearing about pain and tragedy in my classmates lives. I am floored by some of the things that have been shared with me over the past couple days.
My dirty little secret is that if it were up to me I would shut myself off from people. Life would simply be much easier if I didn’t have to deal with others – family notwithstanding (but I really don’t mind taking a break from them either). I watched the movie “Into the Wild” a couple months ago with my family. The whole time we were watching the film my wife kept saying – you want to do that, don’t you? Well, yes – what a dream.
The reality, though is I am a servant and follower of the Christ and he calls me to have intentional relationships with people. I asked God a year ago or so to help me be more loving, compassionate, and intentional with people. To do this in a Godly way requires no pre-conceived notions and no agendas. Try that sometime – it’s not easy. Everybody is in it for something.
“Life is pain, princess…anyone who tells you differently is selling something.”
I have been confronted by so much pain in the last few weeks by numerous people; that have all of a sudden chosen to confide in me??? It’s strange; it’s humbling; it’s overwhelming. I’ve cried more in the last few weeks than I ever have – and I used to be really good at sucking all the emotion in and not letting stuff get to me. But I’m not crying for myself – I’m crying for others. I really feel their pain, and the overwhelming despair that some have shared with me. I don’t know about you – but this is kinda new to me…
Some of the people who have shared with me will likely read this post – to them I simply say, “I don’t have the answers, but I will walk with you. I feel your pain as best as I am able, and it sucks.”
What I am learning in all of this is that every one of us has a story to tell, and everyone of us has been hurt by something that has happened to us in our lives. We’re all trying to cope as best we can – some are doing better than others, some are better at ‘hiding’ the pain than others.
So, it’s not that I don’t like people – that was my way of being “safe” – somehow I have become a person that people turn to for pastoring, counseling, confiding, or simply an ear to listen.
I’m still listening.