Dear Beloved: Misperceptions

Dear Beloved,

If others perceive you wrongly, this does not alter the truth of who you are in any form. You are still too concerned with what other people think of you. A sense of ‘justice’ burns within your spirit as you listen to words you do not think are true, words that seem to belie the integrity or complexity of your character. But these words (and false impressions) are only meaningful insofar as you allow them to affect you. There is nothing wrong with advocating for truth, but there is a time when it is worthy to so act and a time when this staunch defense of truth derives more from your own insecurities or fears than  from anything else. 

People do not need to like you or understand everything that you are doing, and this is okay – in fact, it is an inescapable aspect of life. We all form impressions of the people we encounter and to a certain extent these impressions are all incomplete. Each person is coming from their own individual struggles, motivations and biases and can never enter fully into your own beautiful individuality. How, then, can you expect everyone to understand what it is you are doing when only God has placed you on this path and is fully knowledgeable about every moment of this journey (past, present and future)? 

And yet, you are not centered in God’s affirming voice but in the changeable, transient things you have heard… You balance on one foot, and the slightest breeze of an unknown hurtful word will cause you to sway. Until you root yourself in the unchanging nature of God’s love for you and the promise of His plan and guidance for your life, then you are at the mercy of other people and will be easily knocked over. Remember that your knowledge of yourself and your struggles and successes (no matter how small) are of infinitely more value than something hurtful spoken by another who is not coming from this same place of understanding. You may have to let them walk away with an uncorrected yet false image of your identity, but if this image is not connected to your real identity, then it has no lasting significance. You can only approach such a person with compassion and an attempt to understand where they may be coming from. 

If there can be any good or truth found, even in hurtful or unkind words, do not be too proud to take it, for we are all of us human and we should take great delight in the opportunity given us each morning to strive more towards beauty and love. And in the blinding light of these higher and unchanging things, the small fluttering ego, fearful of being misrepresented, becomes unimportant, and would gladly give itself up to be absorbed in this divine beauty, which has the capacity for individual love and yet strips away the need for earthly praise.