My beggars’ prayer: oh lord, please don’t let me be misunderstood.
Since kindergarten, I’ve learned more about me from others than I have from myself. Some true, and some not, and I take it all with a spoonful of cream of wheat because I love it so much. I ask them often, though, to sit and listen to my side so there are no misunderstandings.
In conversations today, I learned of relationships I’ve never had and never knew existed intentions that have never crossed my mind and lives I never knew existed. I’ve learned long ago not to let it bother me too much. Its flattering sometimes. Well, not the time I learned I was in a two year relationship with someone I barely met, but other stories I admire.
I am saddened each time this has happened, however, at the audacity shown, and others’ inability to turn the mirror toward themselves. Lorraine Hansberry taught us, among so many other things, that it is harder to look through the eye of a needle than to look around one.
“I am not Jesus,” I told my high school teacher, Ms. Bowles, when she called me at 9pm on a school night accusing me of being the Christ. Flattered. “But,” I told her, if you need me to be that for you to justify your lack of sufficient knowledge, talent and skill, I will. We soon became fast friends. She tanked me for teaching her to look through the eye at the world. Not in those words, really, but I knew what she meant.
Let me teach you: ask questions so there are no misunderstandings. Self reflect, and listen to others.
Oh lord, it’s been done.