rose colored glasses

I’ve often identified as someone with a permanent pair of rose colored glasses. I would pride myself on the ability to see the best in people. I chose to see the world for what it could be, and refused to see it for what it actually was.

I thought that deliberate naivety was a strength. But over time, the world wore me out.

I’ve been hurt over and over again. Broken. Disappointed. Shocked and dismayed at how people work. How broken our systems are. How people just don’t really care. And I wasn’t sure what to do with all of these revelations. I felt compelled to hold on to my blind optimism… lest I fall into hopeless pessimism. But there is something mad wrong with those two perspectives.

Often we get upset whenever anyone deviates from the social norms of respect, tolerance, positivity, friendship and butterflies and flowers. Because they’re straying away from what should be. And the world tells you to drop those toxic people in your life and to surround yourself with the good ones. You’ve just gotta find them.

But is our problem really that we just need to find “better” people to surround ourselves with? Or do we hold a faulty perspective with the wrong expectations?

Christianity teaches sinfulness. It teaches that the world is a dark place that, with God, we can choose to illuminate light into. Not the other way around.

As a Christian, I should expect the world to be broken. If I believe that all people are sinners, why am I shocked when no one lives up to be a walking incarnate Jesus?

I should expect people to sin. To make mistakes. To hurt me. I just have to check myself and make sure I don’t fall into the same trap of one-way thinking, because not everything and everyone is out to get me either.

I’ve found it’s more so about grace. Giving room for people to make mistakes. I shouldn’t expect anyone to be perfect. I should offer them the same grace that I freely receive from Jesus in my own imperfection. And understand that in my own journey in striving towards growing myself and becoming a better person, I must recognize that everyone else is on that same difficult journey of trying to figure out how exactly to do that.

I want to have a real connection between what I purport to believe in my head, and how I choose to look at the world. What does a nuanced, balanced, mature biblical perspective on life look like?

So far I’ve got this:

There is beauty in the brokenness.

January 16, 2020

Josh Swanson