Wednesday, February 3, 2016

Love The Person, Not The Personaity


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"Love the person, not the personality!"

Those words were spoken by my priest this weekend in his homily.  It was exactly what I needed to hear.  He was talking about a story from long ago when he first became a priest.  There was a change of leadership at a church where the pastor was very dynamic and well loved by his parishioners.  The new pastor was not seen as enthusiastic as the previous priest. The congregation was frustrated and began writing letters trying to convince whoever would listen that the new pastor was not doing a good job.

After awhile the dynamic priest became aware of his former parishes complaint.  He found an excuse to come back one weekend and celebrate mass.  He began mass by apologizing to everybody in the pews..at first people were relieved thinking he was saying sorry he left them.  But he went on, "I'm sorry I failed you all.  You see, I may have built a great, thriving parish but I clearly missed teaching you all to love.  You must love the person, not just the personality."

He went on to explain that we love Christ..therefore must love who is in "persona Christi"...in place of Christ....even if we don't LOVE the personality!

I sat there on Sunday, just having wrapped up a pretty weepy week, stunned.  I have a child that  I was failing to LOVE...and it was exactly for this reason..PERSONALITY !!

My sweet child and I can struggle to get along sometimes and I was thinking all week that I just wished I had the key to fixing it.  I remember thinking that...what am I missing...

LOVE...not performance....not attention...not expectations...not failures....not hurt feelings...not past mistakes..just LOVE.

Simple...not the personality...THE PERSON!!
           ... not the grades produced....The PERSON!
          .... not the conversations we have or don't have....THE PERSON!
         

4 comments:

  1. That's a great reminder. Above all else...love one another

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  2. I have the same problem. Thanks for the reminder. Some people are just harder to love. God is testing our ability to give it.

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  3. So many moms say having little children is hard. And as difficult as that journey can be, as they grow and the challenges grow, whether it is school, peers, bullys, and general attitiude the diffculty can grow. I love the phrase, love the person, not the personality. I believe it goes hand in hand with the phrase, this too shall pass. I found my boys as teenagers much harder to parent than when they were small. They are good people, but the challenges parenting them were great.
    Breathe, think calmly and try to remember the big picture is a raising good people who can problem solve and function on their own. :)

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  4. Wow! I wish I had heard those words several years ago when my son was in high school. It certainly would have eased some pain...on both sides. Thank you for sharing.

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