by Heather Tietz
Let all bitterness, wrath, anger, outcry, and slander, be put away from you, with all malice. And be kind to one another, tender hearted, forgiving each other, just as God also in Christ forgave you.
Chameleons get a lot of press for their ability to camouflage. But, they have another fascinating talent – their eyes can look in different directions at the same time! They literally can scan their surroundings with one eye and focus on an approaching predator with the other. They have a complete perspective on life! Our human eyes, on the other hand, are so limited, and likewise, are our perspectives. Our narrow view opens wide the window to misunderstanding. We can’t see all the world at the same time. We don’t know what cultural influences build other’s decisions. We can’t see the pain that presses them to misbehave. We don’t know their history. We can’t possibly understand all their behaviors, and they can’t completely understand us. When we forget how humble our viewpoint is, we make assumptions about others that make us bitter, angry, hateful and slanderous.
I think of the angry wife whose husband didn’t call late for dinner. She prepared her bitter speech while cooking. She added derogatives while eating, and exclamation points while chugging through her children’s homework. She was finally ready to explode when the doorbell rang…until she saw the police. Her misunderstood husband had been in an accident.
We just can’t see all the world. Thank God He does. He understands us. He forgives us. We need to acknowledge our limited perspectives and humble ourselves, and instead of anger, pass around forgiveness.