Day 20 – I’m starting with the woman in the mirror…

Mirror

Day 20 267x350 Day 20   Im starting with the woman in the mirror...I’ve woken up this morning after a night filled with random and confusing dream snippets. I am getting used to waking up and writing the dreams down because I know that one of the ways God talks to us is through our dreams.

. I figure that if I’m faithful to record them and ask Him what they mean, I’ll hear all the more clearly.

When I woke up and talked through the dreams with my husband, I saw that a common theme emerged and so now I know that I need to ask God what to do with what I dreamt. I’ll also know to be on the lookout for anything that happens around me that corresponds to that theme.

My husband’s answer to my question of why I dreamt all of these things was that he reckons that when we’re in a hotel, our sensitive spiritual antennae pick up what is happening in other people’s lives. Very interesting…

We went down to breakfast and saw a fascinating interaction between two people. This hotel chain prides itself on its service to white collar workers as there are quite a few international business parks surrounding it and they are its usual clientele. The restaurant was beautifully laid out and the food looked delicious. As we sat there eating I noticed that we were the only couple and all the rest of the people were individuals eating breakfast alone. An Asian man came in and was shown to his seat by an older white woman who was a waitress. In between her seating him and him putting his breakfast down, he decided to move table (there were plenty available). As soon as he’d put his plate on his table she came up to him, and in a voice loud enough to be heard by everyone, looked at him and said, “That’s not your table, this one is”. Even I was embarrassed for him!

It’s so interesting looking at the way we all interact with each other. My perception of what went on is that even though the woman was, in this scenario, the server of the man, she felt superior to him and thus justified in talking to him this way because she was white and he was Asian; she was British and he was a foreigner (just my perception of the circumstances).

The roles we either put ourselves into, or are put into, are varied and change throughout the day. For instance – while someone is at their job and is a customer service representative for example, they are the server of the client and thus having to cater to that client’s needs. This all happens because the ‘server’ is at the mercy of the ‘servee’. The server caters to the servee’s needs because they want the servee’s money in exchange for the service they’re offering. Yet the moment the server’s shift is over, they shed that persona and revert to being on even ground with the person they were just serving. Now, because they’re free of the role of having to cater to the other person, they will put on whatever their ‘normal’ persona is – bully, introvert, social misfit, dominator, intellectual, party girl etc etc. We change these personas to fit each situation we’re in throughout the day, depending on the circumstances we’re in, our past conditioning and how we want those circumstances to turn out.

As I parked back to the hotel after dropping my husband off at work, I found a parking spot and drove into it forwards. Now, let me stop right here and say that I think I’m a pretty good driver. Others do too and have commented on it. So, it’s a particular point of pride for me.

Our car is big and long, so as I went into this space, it was difficult to straighten the car sufficiently in order to leave enough room for the doors of the cars either side of me to open comfortably because my car was at an angle. I was between the lines but I know how mad I get when I can’t get into my car because someone else has parked skew in their space. So, I reversed in and out another twice before the car was exactly square and everyone had room. As I was doing this, there was a gentleman standing outside the hotel, having a cigarette and he was watching me. Now I’ve seen enough videos on the internet of women doing silly things when they drive, to have an idea of what this guy might be thinking. My pride was getting severely dented because I hadn’t got this manoeuver right the first time and I was becoming so embarrassed that I was willing to wait in the car until he’d gone inside so that I didn’t have to face him. As I switched off the engine, I asked myself a question. “What was your motivation for trying to park the car squarely in the space?” Did it take you 3 tries because you’re a bad driver or because you wanted to give the driver each side of you enough space to comfortably get into their car?”

When I realised that I did it out of consideration I then asked myself, “Are you happy with your reasons and can stand tall in them without having to worry about what the man might be thinking?” Phew…loaded question!

I realized that I could. I was happy with my reasons – whether he knew them or not and regardless of what his opinion was!

I still had that tweak in my tummy when I got out of the car and saw him there, but I squared my shoulders, reminded myself of my answer to the question and walked right on by J

As I looked out of our hotel room window at the cars parked in the parking lot, I thought about all of the different stories behind the owner’s of each car. Just like all the stories I dreamed about last night, the lady and the gentleman at breakfast, the man in the car park and me – each person has their own story. Each person has their own fears, confidences, pride, insecurity, history and future. Each story is completely unique and different to anyone else’s. In every interaction we have with another human being every day, we bring our own story and it meets up with their story. Every time this happens it writes another part in each of our stories, as our world’s touch for a time.

I listened to a podcast of a well-known preacher on my way back to the hotel and in it he was reminding us that we’re ‘masterpieces’. He told a story of how an elderly man passed away in complete poverty and when his home was cleared out, they found an old painting on the wall. They sold this to someone for a little bit of money and then this person took the painting to an art gallery. Turns out it was created by a famous artist and was eventually sold for 3 million dollars. All that time the old man lived in such poverty, he had $3 million hanging on the wall by his chair. He had all that treasure but never knew it. Similarly with us. We have been created by THE master painter and are tremendously valuable as a result. Most of us don’t think about how amazing we are but choose, instead, to belittle and criticize ourselves.

When we can look at not only ourselves, but every other person we come into contact with every day, as the masterpieces we all are, imagine how much more amazing each day would be. Love would disarm so many potentially harmful interactions and we’d all be more comfortable with who we really were created to be.

I can dream of what the world would look like if we all acted this way, but I think the place that I have to start, is with me. As Michael Jackson sang ‘I’m starting with the man in the mirror’.

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