I have a new article up at NewEvangelizers.com
I remember waiting for an elevator at a store. When it opened, there was a woman waiting to get off. I was lost in some random thought, so I rudely went in before letting her out. I realized my error as soon as I entered, and I said, “I’m sorry.” To which she responded, “I should say so.”
That little exchange stayed with me for most of the day. I can still feel a little sting when I remember it. I was in the wrong and she had every right to be angry. But strangely, this person I have never met before, and probably will never meet again, is left with a single impression of me (that she has probably now long forgotten) as a mean, terrible person (albeit in a smallish fashion). The idea that anyone could feel that way about me is unsettling.
I think that is the same with most of us. While there are those who let things like this roll easily off of their backs, many of us would do almost anything to avoid being hated. It gnaws at us when we are spurned and we burn with shame when we are bullied and defamed. We tell little white lies to avoid angering the people around us. We flatter so as to avoid wrath. In school we learn to conform so as not to stand out for ridicule.
Maybe I’m wrong, but I would say that it is very human of us to hate being hated.
And that is why it is so important that we learn to love being hated.
You can read the entire article here.