Pick Noses not Fights.
Kind words are like honey.
You have three wishes. You can't wish for more wishes (duh.), or world peace (why not!?). What do you wish for? A million dollars probably. Free gas for a year. Espresso machine complete with your own personal barista. All the Airmiles. Health. Happiness. The usual.
What about kindness? It's a popular word. It looks great on a sticky note on your fridge. That kindess and caffeine thing might just be my favorite. But I have a terrible secret. I'm mean.
It's a disease. It's contagious. It eats you up, stops you from having any fun at all. It blinds you, puts Terrible Things in your brain and mouth and soul. It builds walls. Tall, rocky, grey walls, complete with a misty rain that makes you miserable. You trudge around in soggy rubber boots, your sock slipping down, and the beginning of a blister forming on your left heel. Water runs in your eyes and stings, all because of that moisturizer you put on that morning. You really didn't want to use it, you're sure it's the root of your pimples, but you did, and now it's all mixed with that rain and dripping into your eyes and stinging something terrible. You really are quite sad to look at.
But even with burning eyes and ugly thoughts, you effectively judge and categorize everyone you meet. Nice outfit, could have done better with the shoes. Are people still wearing that? Terrible makeup. You just wish you were 20. Too bubbly. Too boring. Too fake. Too mean. Avoid her. Too left field. Too right field. Close minded. Rude. Cliquey.
I'm mean, I'm mean, I'm mean.
And I'm contagious. Don't get near me, with my opinions and ideas and beliefs of How Things Should Be. I'll spew it all over you, and expect you to take my words with shining eyes. 'Wow, that Bethany girl, she sure knows what's what.' I'll expect you to walk away enlightened, happy to have gained such knowledge, such expertise. Because I just know I'm right. I'm the ray of sunshine, shining on what's right and good and TRUE. And you should believe me. But I'm mean.
They say admitting you're wrong is the most important step to recovery. I'm wrong. I was wrong to be mean. I don't want to be mean. It binds you. It fills you with fear. Your allies are bound to you over mutual dislikes. It's exhausting. Your mean mind creates mean alternate realities, which you believe. Because it's probably true. Because you're mean and miserable, so everyone else must be too.
I'm over it.
I've had an epiphany. It did happen on a warm beach, the sun was quite lovely, and the water was the most remarkable colour, and there was no wifi and I was actually quite out of all gossip whatsoever, had been for some time. I'm saying this because this all had a mind clearing effect on me, and epiphanies happen under such circumstances in my experience. It was earth shattering for me, old hat for others, but it was important.
Meaness is a disease, it's rampant. I'm never going to bring world peace, but in my corner of the earth, I can. I'm going to be That Person. Starting now. The one who is positive, the one who takes drastic measures to reroute a negative conversation. The one who laughs heartily when someone asks for your real opinion on this scandal or that, dabs teary eyes, and start into paroxysms of giggles all over again, because how can you have an opinion over a scandal you'd never heard of? I want to be the person everyone can feel comfortable around, because judgement and malicious thoughts aren't a part of who I am. Pure. Kind. Gracious. High ideals. I know.
And there is a God. He knows. I've asked Him. He'll help me. I have so many people in my life who are like the sun itself. We'll stick together. And we'll outshine the sun. Because Jesus is leading this army. We'll be healed.