Judgement vs Concern….

Hello! I realise it’s been 8 months since I last wrote, I have missed this place so much but there have been so many things going on, too close to my heart to share so I shall leave the past 8 months where it belongs (for now that is!) and look ahead, to the future…

The above photo I took at my brother-in-law’s wedding, I was told they are Chinese prayers that should be said when praying for family members or a loved one. There is something so beautiful about Chinese scripture, looking at it takes me back to a memory I saw in Beijing in 2000. My sister won 2 Club Class BA tickets to anywhere in the world of her choice! She took me and off we went to China (AMAAAAZING!!) Anyway, one morning, very early we ventured out to Tiantan Park in the center of Beijing where we were to behold the most incredible display of hundreds of early morning risers doing Tai-Chi. Watching them I remember feeling so incredibly calm, it was as if they had encased a soft warm bubble of energy around themselves and were just happily moving about inside it, totally in sync with each other, breathing with the earths natural rhythm. Anyway, I’m getting side-tracked! There were people dancing with fans, stretching and limbering going on all over the place and prayer writing being painted with large brushes and water on the stone paths. There was one particular man who caught my eye who had gotten to the end of writing his prayer, I noticed the beginning had completely disappeared and evaporated in the warm morning sun. I remember thinking how sad it was that he couldn’t stand back and look at his prayer and also that others couldn’t read it. It was later explained to me that the prayers were for his family, to keep them safe.

I recently had a really difficult choice to make, do I stand back and watch as someone I really care about make terrible life choices or wade in and insist they see the error of their ways? Is this an easy question or a really difficult position to be in, perhaps both. The consequences of begging someone, perhaps getting cross with them, shouting even as you see them approach their downfall is far more upsetting than standing back and doing nothing. At first that is, until you watch them plummet inevitably and then the real pain begins as you wish you’d done something more to help them. Difficult conversations are so hard to have that’s why they’re called ‘difficult’! We can’t help being judgmental when it’s genuinely coming from a good place, it’s our only way of showing concern and honestly wanting to help someone. When we are really young we rely on our parents to help show us the difference between what’s right and wrong and as we get older we begin to choose our own path and make our own beds. We end up having our own opinions about what we believe to be the difference between good and bad. I don’t believe I have all the answers to life’s quandaries and I am the first to hold my hand up and say that I too need help once in a while. It’s not a pleasant feeling to admit that someone else might know you better than you know yourself, that someone else might know what’s best for you. As difficult as it is to hear, perhaps we all need to be judged a little to keep us on the straight and narrow. Like the Chinese scripture and the man writing his prayers every day to keep his family safe, I too have to be able to actively embrace my morals and do what I believe is right. I used to think that being supportive meant saying what others wanted and needed to hear but now I realise life is too precious and the heart can only take so much. There has to be difficult conversations to remind us what’s important, we must not shy away from what we believe and try to help others choose the right path for them, one that will make them happier and wiser, even if’s a tough road to take. Surely we can all do with getting by with a little help from our friends even if it’s sometimes so very hard to hear.

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