Saturday, March 11, 2006
Words can suddenly take on a cart load of new meaning. Transparent is one of those words. I remember calling things like glass transparent. Then one year, transparent was a property that I was supposed to have if I were to excel at being a nice guy. This seemed odd to me because, most of my life, if someone said they could see right through me, it was not a compliment. My handy on-line dictionary says that transparent can also mean free from pretense or deceit. If someone can see right through me and finds pretense and deceit, then it is a bad thing. If they can see that I am free of pretense and deceit, I am transparent, which is good.
This leaves me with a conundrum. I can be open and honest, but then folks will find out that I am indeed pretentious and deceitful. Or I can try to cover up that part of myself at the expense of my transparency. I could deceitfully claim to be transparent, but I am afraid that folks would see right through me.
This all begins to be pretty silly. That is generally what happens if I think too much about how others see me (or see through me). If I make an effort to be transparent, I invariably fall into pretension and deceit.
More and more I find that actually caring about someone else is the only escape. I can listen to what they have to say. I can do things for them. I can give things to them. However, somewhere along the line there comes an important part where I talk about how I am doing. If I only listen, the other person will soon tire of talking and wonder what the heck I am thinking. If I only give and never take, others would have no opportunity to show that they care about me. Love involves giving and receiving.
God is love. I want to be more like God. Jesus is the only human that is also God. So I want to be more like Jesus. I ask God to help me be like him. Am I being clear?