The Past That Shapes Us
After just a few, short interactions with people we feel qualified to assign them certain adjectives. Perhaps they seem helpful, kind, or generous. Others we may categorize as bitter, difficult, or rough around the edges. While those characteristics may be true on the surface, it takes effort to learn where that person came from and what events shaped who they are right now.
It takes a listening ear and a patient heart, but we would benefit from getting to know those “difficult” people a little more. Usually, when a person feels valued and cared for, the gruff exterior comes down to reveal years of hurt, pain, or regret.
Creating a space where someone feels safe enough to share their past takes trust and vulnerability. Your motive must also be pure. Seek to know someone deeply, not to throw the past back in their face, but to learn how to care and love them even better.