“Knowing that we can be loved exactly as we are gives us all the best opportunity for growing into the healthiest of people.” Mr. Rogers
Change or else! That is a message that we often hear from others as we grow up. It seems that many people want us to be versions of what they prefer rather than the best version of who we are. When we foist change upon other people, we do them a grave disservice.
Oh, yes, there are times that we might have to tell someone what they should do for their own good. I’m not talking about those times. I’m talking about the many other times that we tell people that they just aren’t cutting it because they don’t match our expectations for them.
Who are we to tell another person what he or she should be? Don’t we have enough issues and imperfections of our own to take care of? If we love others unconditionally, we provide them the rich soil that they need to change and grow. Knowing that they are going to be loved by us as they make their many attempts at change in their lives gives them the courage to try.
We all know that we need to change. We also know that when we have attempted change and flopped — sometimes miserably — and still had the love and support of people important to us, we had the strength to try again and rise above our failings.
Look at what you like. Look at what you want. Look at what you desire. Don’t we all like to be loved unconditionally? Don’t we all want to be supported by people who are important to us even when we stumble? Don’t we desire people in our lives who are willing to look past our mistakes and encourage us to try once more?
If we want that for ourselves, we should be willing to provide that same love and support for others.
FAITH ACTION: If you have been attempting to force someone to change, consider giving that person unconditional love, support, and encouragement instead.