Do you have people in your life that you have nothing in common with? Maybe you're related to them, maybe you married into their family, maybe they married into yours, but at some point I think we all meet that person that is fundamentally different than us. And if you're lucky/cursed/a human being, you may even be related to them. I had lunch with "my" person today.
What's interesting is that, on the surface, we should get along fine. She's a lot like my own sister in personality type, we grew up in very similar households, have the same level of academic achievement, same religious beliefs, etc. But somehow we still approach life from totally different perspectives. I don't know if I'll ever understand her, but I'm working on how to better handle our interactions. Because it seems like we can't go 2 months without somehow ruffling each other's feathers.
See, she's much better at a lot of stuff than I am. She's a phenomenal housekeeper, very organized, and kinda fearless, in a bold-as-brass-balls kinda way. I'm (if I may)...
holy crap...I'm really struggling to come up with things I'm better at than her, other than "nicer" or "more gentle". Maybe this is part of why I struggle with her. I lose sight of who I am when I'm with her. Huh...I'll have to ponder that.
Ok, so besides maybe more easy-going, I'm a better critical thinker. I like to be informed about my decisions and do my research. Which, honestly, is part of why my house isn't terribly clean. I'm researching stuff for my family's health, and then doing the off the beaten path stuff I learn about (chiropractor for my infant, anyone?).
I'm comfortable with my decisions. Sure, I'm trying to keep a better house, but my husband is fed well and my children are learning and growing together. I'm more focused on teaching them cooperation and empathy than reading and math (they're barely preschool aged). I don't doubt my choices and focus until I'm around her.
We judge each other really harshly, she and I. Not in so may words, but in looks and rolled eyes and whispers to our spouses. I've got to find a way to offer her the GRACE I'm called to. So, today, I'm taking a page from my mother's book. She told me once that when she had trouble getting along with someone who was her polar opposite, she just prayed for them. Not for her relationship with them, or for them to change; she prayed for THEM.
I'm praying that she'll have a good day today.
That she'll find peace and fulfillment in her endeavors.
That she'll have a nice, relaxed evening with her husband.
That she'll stay warm enough in this icky cold rain.
That the joy of the Lord with surround her.
Trying to leave myself out of it..it takes a conscious effort. Lord, keep me focused on her well-being and not what you're teaching me. There'll be time for that later. I need to step out of myself and focus totally on another human being. Bless her today.
Also, thank You for a wise mother. =)
How do you deal with people you differ from? Any ideas for keeping the peace?