Nobody likes being pitied. It feels beneath our dignity somehow. We’re human beings—glorious creatures capable of greatness. Pity seems to deny this and, instead of recognizing our capacity, feels sorry for us instead.
Yet I’ve been realizing something in my own life lately. It’s not all that uncommon for me to mistake genuine care and loving concern for pity.
Love is not pity. Yet my tendency towards pride will often try to convince me that it’s not out of love that others act. It’s out of pity.
I’m realizing lately that life is a lot more joyful when we assume the best of people in all cases—and especially with regard to how others treat us. See, my pride often leads me to draw negative conclusions about the motives of others based on absolutely nothing.
That guy looked over at me when Baby Ty made a noise during mass. He probably thinks I’m a terrible mother.
(or, you know, maybe he just turned his head because he heard a loud noise)
Jane didn’t come over and say hi to me at [insert social event here]. She’s probably mad at me for something.
(oh wait…that means I didn’t go over and say hi to her, either. And I’m not mad at her, soo…)
Ohmygosh SoAndSo just said something that slightly disagreed with that one blog post I wrote three years ago. They’ve probably been mad at me ever since.
(or it’s possible that they are just having a conversation with you. Have they been acting mad at all? No? Ok then)
It’s easy to play the victim to imaginary scenarios and pretend like I’m the one being wronged, but in truth, it’s not at all loving of me to assume the worst of people based on pure conjecture. Love seeks the good. Love doesn’t assume the worst. It’s time to stop feeling pitied and start loving instead!