It is hard to know, really believe and trust, who is on your side or not. For most of us, we unconsciously divide those around us into the good guys and the bad ones. We resist putting a label on them, however, if we reflect on our behavior, we are clearly sending signals to anyone willing to listen! However, when it expands beyond the immediate circle the question of trust is much less clear, more difficult, and often confusing.
The challenge and fun in living comes with the negotiating that is a core part of life itself. Others have their own priorities, values, and agendas. We have ours. As we live together, we negotiate, communicate, and bargain. Sometimes there is an exchange of one value for something of importance. On other occasions, one side or the other bullies, forces, cajoles the counter-party into doing what they want.
The “count to 100” moments occur when you and I are going different directions, yet we need to travel together for a time. Who gives way? What is the right solution? It is easy to say the alternatives are equally good as well as being morally and ethically right. What happens when it is the person you love holds the opposite view? Do you always have to win?
Men and women are often described as coming from different planets. Fathers and sons, mothers and daughters, parents and children (especially teenagers) all fall into discreet camps. Living is not simple, or is it?
First, “Curses on those who drive a hard bargain! Blessings on all who play fair and square!” (Proverbs 11.26)
Second, “winning” is rarely about your views prevailing, but more about taking a step closer to God as one travels with others through this thing we call life.
Third, what we call “living” is often a disguise for getting even after the last encounter, finding revenge, or doing what “I” want. Letting go of this to discover what it means to “be in God” will open up something very different.
Life is an amazing opportunity. Live, really live.