My mission is to love people "from the inside out" and inspire others to do the same.

F is for Focus

Sometimes it takes focus to love people from the inside out. Sometimes it takes focus to remember to treat even some strangers we encounter with respect regardless of how they present themselves. For example, at the grocery store recently, as I was looking for a checkout lane, I saw one with only one customer in it. But I almost didn't go into that lane, because that one customer was a man who, frankly, looked disgusting. His hair was very greasy and stringy. His teeth were very yellow. He seemed to be a little slow. I was about to turn away in disgust, when the thought popped into my head, "This is a person God loves; maybe I can at least find a way to be civil?" I don't often think that way, but the thought came, I acted on it, and I'm glad I did. The man didn't speak to me or anything; I don't think he even looked at me. I'm just glad I remembered and acted on the notion that just because a person doesn't "present" well does not mean that I shouldn't even be around them.

When it comes to people we know, we might have to really work to remember the good things about some of them--or even to find the good things in the first place. I mean, we all know people who just rub us the wrong way, who really get on our nerves. The better part of valor is to look for the good in them, because no one is just "one thing." Everyone has traits that are more positive and some that are less so. But do we focus only on the negative ones and not give the person a chance to prove that they are more than just that one thing that annoys us? By the way, I'm totally "preaching to myself" here. This is not something I'm particularly good at. I tend toward black-and-white thinking. I need to find ways to look for the good in others--even when it's hard to find.

How have you focused on the good, and how has it changed your life?

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