Do you see things in black and white? Do you see the parallel between the game of Othello and life?
Life is simply complicated. Mercy and justice are flip sides of the same coin. Good and evil are not mutually exclusive. Instead, they confusingly coexist –often co-mingled. Formulas and check lists of right and wrong, alone, cannot help one navigate the ambivalence that arises in relationships. Boundaries, forgiveness, discernment, and grace, however, are tools in the tool box of those who are master craftsmen at life. Each is easy to misunderstand and misuse. But with commitment, all can produce life changing outcomes when wisely applied.
Sadly, our culture is so ignorant of these concepts and so lacking in healthy practitioners that division is the hallmark of our times. As the home goes, so goes the nation. As a generation shunned the black and white thinking of legalistic religion in pursuit of self actualization, passionate pursuit of sophisticated life skills and deep concepts modeled by a simply complex Lord were cast aside. We have become a spiritually bankrupt nation.
Fear of commitment abounds. Marriages happen later and less often than in past generations– and when it does it is often between battle scarred survivors of unhealthy relationships. Families are in decline. Fewer and fewer couples dare or care to risk their cash, comfort zones, or careers on children. In doing so, the safety net of family and all the skills that arise from navigating those challenging waters are lost. Again, people become what they despise as they lapse into an over simplified black and white world.
I recommend the following article. The political observation makes the case for what goes on in personal relationships as well. This is not a call to throw off convictions. Rather, this is a challenge to explore the shard in your own eye while pointing your finger at the speck in someone else’s. We all do it. It is a basic premise of group therapy. Individuals can see in others what they are reluctant or unable to see in themselves. It is powerful concept. Iron sharpens iron in much the same way that relationships refine us–if we will stay the course and learn how to use discernment in dealing with people, to forgive offenses while still setting appropriate boundaries, and to live a life of grace. Life concepts can…. take a minute to learn, but a lifetime to master.