I cannot expect to be shunned, despite myself. You know those mental processes that take you from point a) to point z) in 0.68 seconds? I’m constantly there. I go from taking my change absentmindedly with a kind smile at the counter in the grocery, to walking out wondering about the Mongols some thousands of years ago, and starting the car to my thoughts buzzing on Cleopatra’s eye liner. Mind you, it is all connected by a webbed myriad of passing thoughts. One older friend of mine took a lick of ice cream and he was building a bomb shelter in case of Nazi invasion. This may or may not be funny.
I just did it to you. I was just talking about not expecting to be shunned, then dragged you through Mongolia, ice cream, and Nazis. Our minds take us places, and suddenly an assumption, becomes a fact. But the fact is sometimes we begin to think something is truth, just because we thought it. This is one of the most self-destructive tendencies of the average human being.
You know this example.
“Did you just see what she did?”
“No? I missed it! All I saw was when she took the trash out.”
We think we know something about someone and build more upon that mentally, until their every action is connected to our mental image of who they are. She really only took the trash out, but the person believing something based on assumption, saw so much more. I can tell you for a fact that if someone lives like that, they have a wake of destroyed relationships behind them and more are coming their way. They are unconscious to it. “They” might even be… “you.”
“But, seriously, this is not based on an assumption! I know she’s mean and I’m not going to be blind-sided again!” Just a second. You know she’s mean because of an action you experienced previously that was based out of what flaw? Who appointed her with that flaw? Don’t tell me it was your brain without all the facts surrounding her entire person…There is so much more to every moment on this universe than we will ever absorb. I personally cannot attempt to be so bold as to assume that I understand every instant enough to condemn someone in my thoughts immortally.
There’s something to the Scriptural adage about “taking thoughts captive to obedience.” It is protection. Examining our own thoughts for truth based upon unadulterated fact, keeps you safe from trouble. Recognizing your own fallibility protects the people you should be trusting, but won’t. Or maybe you like living and thinking the worst of others based on nothing.
Now, we go back to the shunning. Taking thoughts captive runs both ways. We can look at ourselves and assume people are thinking about us a certain way, when in fact, it never even occurred to them to do so. Do you realize how this could trap you into living how you otherwise would not? People are not even thinking about you in the way you think they are. True story.
It’s a matter of doing what matters. Choosing mind over what you think is matter.
Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things. (Philippians 4:8)