You can tell that Im angry by looking at me. You dont need to talk to me or know anything about me. Everything you need to know is in my appearance.
You can tell when people are sad or lost or happy or angry by looking at them. Take a photo...It tells you everything.
Im one of those people who has a 'naturally crestfallen face". Ive had a large number of total strangers get angry at me because they knew I was angry and they knew that if their life sucked and they were able to put on a happy face then I had absolutely no right to not put on a happy face. They knew that I needed to be put in my place.
I appear to be frowning even when Im smiling. I always look like this. Total strangers (many) have told me to kill myself. They just walk up to me and say "Go ahead and kill yourself buddy, it aint worth it" or "Go home, go to hell, go kill yourself. No one wants and no one ever will".
hmmmm.... I was just minding my own business and I get handed these things from total strangers.
What its taught me is that some people judge by appearances and that I should avoid doing that at all costs.
Its hard not to judge by appearances because thats the way the human mind works. We see things and we get used to a pattern. We use that pattern of recognition to identify and classify what things are and what they mean. We are supposed to learn from things like facial expressions what people are trying to say. We get an awful lot from appearances.
But we shouldnt.
People cannot be seen in a moments time. People are not how they appear at any given moment. People are what they do. People are what they spend all their time trying to create and build.
You will know them by their fruits.
Are people building peace? Are they building hope? Are they building up each other?
Or do they nitpick and tear each other down? Do they contribute to overall fear and anxiety?
This has nothing to do with people who are depressed and have a tendency towards negativism. This is about those who choose to intentionally tear things apart.
Jesus said 'He who does not gather with me, scatters'. Im not positive of the context
but to me its yet another example of Him telling us that we can be on one side or the other. We either Love or we dont. Love is given. Love is a choice. Love is patient and kind.
Jesus warned us against the appearance. He warned against 'the outside of the cup'.
The laws and traditions of men allow for the appearnce of Godliness. People can follow all the 'rules' that make them appear to be 'Godly'. But its Love that is the higher Law and it is that Love that false prophets will not have.
I dont have an ending for this right now.
We have to watch what out politicans do. Thats all that really matters. We have to watch what all the leaders do.
Go slow. Look twice. Look three times. Let people identify themselves through their actions over time. Its the only way to know whats going on.
Let us not be fooled. Amen. (world's second shortest prayer :) )
BTW: There was a pretty nice roundtable discussion on yesterdays (Easter 2011) "This Week". I was pleased to hear viewpoints I agreed with and not just the slash and burn, "Im right, youre wrong" kinda thing. I dont know why the divisions are occurring but I would say that the winnowing fork is doing its job.