Empathy…. and other stuff…

“What hurts me the most are the many occasions when I have not been more understanding and impartial.” – Pope Francis

I usually start my morning with my good morning prayer (which I wrote about before, so, check that one out if you want to know exactly what I pray in the morning). I try to keep to the same routine, but with two small kids and my wife also getting ready at the same times in the morning, I get thrown off every now and then. So, I have a book of quotes from Pope Francis that my aunt gave me, and I take the time every morning to read one. This is the random quote that I fell on today, and because I do not think that things are just done by happenstance, there is a reason why this one stood out today.

I consider myself a reasonable person. I try to walk into conversations with an open mind, and try my best to be considerate of others, in both opinion and in their actions. The key point is that I consider myself this way, but I know that I fall hard on this most of the time. As understanding and impartial as I try to be, I know that I am not. I think what hit me the most about this is that, I know that I want to be treated with respect and understanding from others, so, in order to get that, I must put that out into the world. I know that I fail on this point, even though I know how it feels to be on the receiving end of someone who is closed minded to anything you have to say. For me, the latter is a daily struggle.

In every situation that I can recall, every argument, meeting, or whatever setting you can think of, I never came out on top by being bull-headed. I have never had a good relationship with someone when I let my prejudices of them come out. If I approach people with the roughness of a sharp stone, it only leads to more complications and not anything productive. When I approach someone with the kindness and gentleness that is deserving of all people, I usually can make headway and end up in a stronger, open, and prosperous type relationship. This is something that I wish my twenty-one year old self learned.

I know that still fail with this. I hope that God will help me to be better at this, and learn to be more impartial to everyone, no matter their status or their background. It is a truth that everyone is here for a reason, and that we are here to love each and everyone one, not to shun or condemn them. I just will keep praying that I can be a better person.

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