Sunday, June 1, 2014

On being human (May edition)

I shouldn't have been surprised at the words that came out of her mouth not long ago when we were talking, but they caught me off the guard and really struck me.

I was talking about some challenging and confusing stuff going on and she said

"you make me feel more human when I talk to you."

My friend, she moved to Boston last May. I met her at the grocery store where she worked, of course, because that's where I meet everyone. I have no idea what it is with me and the grocery store. I've met everyone from friends to potential dates there. Nothing surprises me anymore so I roll with it.
"you make me feel more human when I talk to you."

Hmm. I guess that is a good thing?

Being human is a good thing. It's one of the most basic things, not frilly, something everyone can relate to. I like that unity. From there, we can recognize what it means to be made with a purpose, thought about ahead of time by God, with His design attached to our own individual lives.

Humanity is also messy. If I'm not mistaken, I think that's the reason she said what she did in the first place. I was talking about messy things and I wasn't afraid to do that then.
There are times I discern (or attempt to) whether I need to bare my soul with this friend or that friend, and there are reasons for that, but overall, I am a fan of honesty and of acknowledging the mess. I know I don't do this as much as I could, but it's what I seek to move toward instead of away from in life.

I think we do a disservice in the church or in our personal lives when we hide out from the places where we don't have it all together. That doesn't mean we don't ever try to do well in anything or allow people to celebrate the good times, but every single friendship that's gone into the harder and more ugly parts has created a freedom to be 'human' that's just not present in every kind of relationship.

Where we let each other be human, there is grace.

Where we let each other be human, we move toward each other instead of away from each other.

Where we let each other be human, we seek to understand instead of being understood. Oh, these are things I am constantly asking God for help.

This doesn't mean we embrace sin. But in giving myself grace, I learn to accept others' faults and flaws because I see myself more acutely. And then I go back to the truth that I am loved. And my over and over prayer is to see with gentler eyes, to look at people the way God sees them.

Have you checked out Humans of New York? I love love it and you can get more than a splash of humanity there.

linking with Emily for what we learned -- and thank you for bearing with me because once again I am more word(y) than picture(y) and I am learning you are visual people. I am sorry and I promise I will try harder next time. Thanks for the love anyway.


  1. I definitely appreciate friendships where I can just be me, human, messy and all. Definitely a good thing!

    1. Yes! Thank you for coming by.
      I often think it's brave to hold it together, but I find again and again it's actually brave to admit there is messiness in me, and in relationships.

  2. Just hosted a friend this past weekend and we just shared everything. :) it was good to be human together.

    1. That's so needed sometimes, right? Glad you had that time!