A classroom poster read, "Acceptance is seeing with the heart, not the eyes." So many times we judge people based on our own experiences, not really knowing what has happened to them. We use our limited perception to interpret their appearance or behavior. Everyone has a story. Joel Osteen wrote, "The world is full of people who need to be understood. We don't know what others are going through. We don't know the hurt or the pain they've endured.....Give people a little room....When you see people through the eyes of love, eyes of compassion, and eyes of understanding, you won't be nearly so critical."
This reminds me of the story of Mary Groda-Lewis who was dyslexic. Because no one recognized it, she was illiterate until age 16. She was very rebellious and went to reform school. While giving birth, she nearly died from a stroke, but through it all, she never gave up. At age 18, she received her GED and was named Oregon's outstanding Upward Bound student. She worked odd jobs and earned enough money to go to college and earn a degree. She still wasn't through with her education, though, as she applied to 15 medical schools and was rejected by them all. Finally she was accepted by Albany Medical School where she graduated with honors at the age of 35. A movie was made about her life. She is now a renown and respected doctor at an Idaho Clinic.
This rebellious young lady turned into a wonderful doctor. Albany Medical School gave her the chance she needed to fulfill her dreams. It would have been easy to write her off like the other medical schools, but this institution saw something in her that other schools had overlooked.
I think the lesson in this story is to practice acceptance and understanding so that we can be a catalyst and make a difference in someone's life. We are all teachers, and we all can be taught. Let us encourage family and friends who are struggling. Make us a blessing in someone's life.
Love and Light,