Or do you ever find yourself defining another by a few small experiences with them?
I have been thinking about this whole defining people thing...I know I am guilty of it. I am guilty of defining a neighbor (don't worry she doesn't read my blogs, let alone know my first or last name) by the fact that she has 5 cats and I've encountered a couple of crabby moments with her, as the "Crabby cat lady". Honestly, it's not right on my part. There is obviously more to her than that and who am I to judge her in the first place, let alone define her entire being on those 2 little things?!
I am guilty of defining others besides my neighbor. While some defining words may be justified, more times than not they're premature.
We have all been defined by something or someone, be it positively or negatively.
I was once defined as "crazy" in a room full of about 100 women. It actually didn't bother me. But it really bothered my best friend. It bothered her because she said "that's NOT who you are. Sure you can have fun and be wild and crazy, but you are not 'crazy' as a definition. That's like saying that's all there is to you. There's so many other things she could have said when introducing you".
Lately, I have been thinking about how we are quick to define others based on small moments with them. We allow those small moments to define their entire being. This "Crazy" situation keeps coming to my mind and I can see my best friend's point.
I still don't care or worry that "oh no people are going to think that's all there is to me" because I have a godly confidence. But what does bother me is that when I stop to think about it, when I would spend time with these women they brought out my fun side. My wild side. I had fun with them. In a moment when I thought I could be myself, I was being defined by only that.
Sometimes our seasons in life define us. Our family, be it good or bad defines us. Our friends define us. Our actions define us. What we say or do...how we look...our past...rumors...gossip...our jobs, etc.
Some definitions are honestly legit and called for. Some sell us & others short.
When we find ourselves quick to 'define' another, I think we should ask ourselves "is this how I would want to be labeled?".
Labels I am okay with:
My kids mom
My dad's daughter
My mom's daughter
and anything POSITIVE that would build my character & esteem or would rightfully summarize me as a human being
Labels I am not okay with:
The past or
Anything that is NEGATIVE or that sells me short as a human being
Don't let another define you by anything negative. Don't let anyone define you by your past. Don't allow another imperfect human being to sell you short by wrongfully summarizing you as a person. There's more to you than the world's definitions/labels. GOD defines & labels us in SO many other rightful, positive, encouraging & esteeming ways! Listen to HIM and the other esteem building people in your life. And strive to BE an esteem builder for others.
Never judge another until you've walked a mile in their shoes.
Ignore the 'cheesiness' of the acting in this video, I realize it's not going to win an academy award :)
It has a great message though.