So, this morning I got an anonymous Valentine’s Day card in the post.
I think I recognised the writing, and I have a sneaking suspicion that the fella who wrote me it is this creepy guy I know who is probably definitely old enough to be my father.
Worst part – it didn’t say “Happy Valentine’s Day” (which anyone can send – from friends to the kids at my youth group to my bloody parents). It chose the less ambiguous route of “Be My Valentine”.
Motivation-wise, it’s either that he didn’t expect me to recognise his writing and wanted me to be encouraged at the idea of having a secret admirer, or else he really does have a thing for me. If the former, good for him.
If the latter though…bloody hell, this isn’t the first time this has happened. I talk and act friendly towards this guy because I assume that, being a creep-meister, he is slightly lonely. It’s happened plenty of times before – I assume that I’m just being friendly towards someone, and then accidentally end up leading them on. I remember one the most frustrating incidents – this Mexican guy that I used to hang around with in Montreal to practise French with (I didn’t speak Spanish and he didn’t speak English); I never thought that he would misunderstand my intentions or friendliness, by simple virtue of our language barrier plus the fact that I was at the time madly in love with someone else. But, it happened. What’s more, he got upset when I spurned his advances(‘What part of “I’m seeing someone” don’t you understand?!’).
So, what do I do? How do I improve my honesty levels while still being kind? If, as in this case, I can’t stand the person in question, is it inauthentic to be nice to them (not that I’m even particularly good at that) – or, conversely, would it be un-Christlike to be not-so-friendly? I tend to lean towards the latter, but look where that’s gotten me. That said, miscommunication is one of the results of the fall, and I guess I should expect such things to happen, and try and remember that even when I can’t abide a certain person, Jesus still loves ’em.
People are unreasonable, illogical and self-centred. Love them anyway.
If you do good, people will accuse you of selfish, ulterior motives. Do good anyway.
If you are successful, you win false friends and true enemies. Succeed anyway.
The good you do will be forgotten tomorrow. Do good anyway.
Honesty and frankness make you vulnerable. Be honest and frank anyway.
What you spent years building, may be destroyed overnight. Build anyway.
People really need help but may attack you if you help them. Help people anyway.
Give the best you have, it will never be enough. Give the best you’ve got anyway.
In the final analysis, it is between you and God. It was never between you and them anyway.